Democratic Women, Including McCaskill, Fill Campaign Bank Accounts Thanks to Rush
March 8, 2012

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. — Sen. Claire McCaskill was so disturbed by Rush Limbaugh’s description of a law school student as a “slut” and “prostitute” that she decided to repeat his rhetoric, featuring it in a fundraising appeal sent to thousands of supporters around the country. The tactic has paid off nicely for the Democrat’s re-election campaign.
McCaskill is one of several female Democratic candidates facing competitive races who are seeking to capitalize on the conservative radio host’s comments to fuel their quests for the U.S. Senate or House. Their message: You can help fight Limbaugh — and, by extension, Republicans or tea party activists — by financing candidates who will stand up for women’s rights.
“It’s been one of our top fundraising emails for Claire,” said McCaskill campaign manager Adrianne Marsh.
Limbaugh has apologized for his comments about Sandra Fluke, a Georgetown law student who testified to congressional Democrats in support of their national health care policy that would compel her Jesuit college’s health plan to cover her birth control. But the apology hasn’t deterred some Democrats from continuing to repeat Limbaugh’s remarks.
On Tuesday, for example, Minnesota congressional candidate Tarryl Clark sent an email fundraising appeal with the subject line “Apology not Accepted.” Clark asked for “$25, $50 or more” to send a message “that publically degrading women is not going to fly anymore.”
Clark is the only woman in a three-way Democratic race for the right to challenge freshman Republican U.S. Rep. Chip Cravaack. The fundraising email has generated several thousand dollars — a quicker response than is typical for such pleas, said Clark campaign manager Brandon Pinette.
Democratic U.S. Rep. Janice Hahn, who because of redistricting faces a primary against a fellow Democrat, Rep. Laura Richardson in Los Angeles, also sent a fundraising email Tuesday highlighting how “a right wing extremist used his radio show to hurl derogatory slurs at a young woman.” Hahn asked for donations of $20 to $40.
The president of the National Federation of Republican Women said Wednesday that Limbaugh’s words were inappropriate and diverted the health care debate away from the Republican assertion that the insurance mandate for contraception infringes on First Amendment freedom of religion protections.