Knock it Off, Huffington Post

The Huffington Post is at it again. A few weeks ago, Name It. Change It. criticized style editor Ellie Krupnick for writing an entire article devoted to GOP presidential candidate Congresswoman Michele Bachmann’s nails. Yet yesterday she posted another article dissecting Rep. Bachmann’s sartorial choices—this time pointing out the fact that Bachmann has worn the same suit more than once during her campaign.  

It should go without saying that Rep. Bachmann does not have an endless closet filled with rows upon rows of suits. So why is it newsworthy that she has repeated an outfit a few times over the past month? And why, oh why, do we care about which shoes she wore with it?

Michele Bachmann surprised us by recently revisiting her silver skirt suit, one of her most memorable outfits. We first met the shiny ensemble back in June when Michele formally announced her run for president. For the big moment, Bachmann paired the suit with one of her biggest sartorial gaffes: the open-back sandals. The footwear flub was fairly egregious: the straps were awkwardly small, there was a childish bow in the center and the worst part of all? She wore the open-back, open-toe heels with sheer pantyhose.

Wearing open-toe shoes with pantyhose? The horror. It’s almost as if Bachmann was too busy running a presidential campaign to pay attention to her footwear.

What’s even worse is that this article is in blatant violation of the reversibility test. As Gloria Steinem stated at the launch of Name It. Change It. last year, “The most workable definition of equality for journalists is reversibility. Don’t…describe her clothes unless you would describe his.” We’re fairly certain that the other GOP presidential candidates have repeated suits over the past year—yet we’d be shocked to find a single article pointing that out.

Ellie, please listen up: this kind of biased journalism is not okay. We’ve asked you before to refrain from publishing sexist content on women leaders in the future, and frankly, we’re sick of your publication’s repeat offenses. Either give Congresswoman Bachmann the respect she deserves by reporting on her race like you would any other presidential candidate, or don’t report on her at all. To do otherwise is just plain sexist.


Published by Kate McCarthy on 11/08/2011

« Back to More Blog Posts