A Republican Senate candidate in Michigan is using her gender to parry attacks that she’s anti-woman.
Terri Lynn Land found herself under fire earlier this month after a video surfaced of a 2010 speech in which she seemed to minimize the importance of equal pay legislation. Dug up by Democratic opposition research group American Bridge, the video served as fodder for Democrats across the country—including President Barack Obama—who are embracing equal pay legislation as an election year wedge issue.
“Apparently, a lot of these Republicans during the debate said they just think that this idea there’s a gender pay gap is a fantasy, it’s not real, there are all these other reasons why this happens,” Obama said to laughter at a fundraiser in Houston to support Democratic congressional candidates. “And in fact, I think there was a candidate for the Senate, a Republican in Michigan, who voiced the opinion that women make other choices. And I think that’s certainly true; every individual makes other choices. Very rarely do you meet people who make the choice to be paid less for doing the same job.”
In her first television ad, Land mocks the attacks in a 30-second direct-to-camera spot airing on broadcast and cable in the state.
“Think about that for a moment,” Land says, before concluding, “as a woman, I might know a little bit more about women than [Democratic opponent Rep.] Gary Peters.”
Campaign strategist John Yob explained the thinking behind the ad in a statement.
“The purpose of this ad is to set the stage for the rest of the campaign and show the absurdity of the Democrats’ strategy to leverage the war on women against Terri. Congressman Peters fired his female campaign manager and brought in the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee elections head who was determined to run a dirty and deceptive campaign–just look at the campaigns the DSCC is running nationwide,”he said. “We expect Congressman Peters and his special interest supporters to continue the manufactured war on women but that is a debate we welcome. Terri Lynn Land has an impeccable record advocating for working women — developing management programs that resulted in more women managers statewide and implementing flexible time for working moms. She also has the vision to get both women and men back to work. Congressman Peters’ special interest allies are launching baseless attacks on birth control and mammograms that they can’t even find a source for in their ads because they are down in the polls, down in fundraising, and out of ideas. These attacks show just how worried the Democrats are about Terri Lynn Land beating Congressman Peters.”