Over the course of my three short years here in Wyoming I have begun to appreciate the incestuous, hypocritical and downright immoral political climate that hangs over our state. I should have anticipated the extent of it when my get acquainted tour of The University of Wyoming in 2008 included a stop at The Dick Cheney International Studies Building. In fact, it has taken some time for me to trace the genealogy and back accounts that connect our state’s political players, but I have come to believe that the nepotism, devotion to money and apathy toward actual Wyoming citizens is a serious problem. This last March I confirmed that my opinion of our state’s political field when I read that “The state of Wyoming received a grade of F in nine of the 14 categories measured by the State Integrity Investigation.” The study cited also said that Wyoming is the 3rd most corrupt state in the nation. I am not surprised.
When I think of government corruption and hypocrisy I think of our state’s representative, Cynthia Lummis. Recently I learned that this woman, who is the 15th richest person in congress with an estimated net worth of between $20 and $75 million dollars, has been using her campaign funds to pay her husband for rent, food, gas and other expenses for years. In 2008 she paid him$9,000 and in 2010 she paid him $11,000. As a feminist I recoil from the idea of paying my husband rent on principle alone. I am even more disgusted with the added implications of having the fine people of Wyoming, most of whom have a much smaller net worth than Lummis, donate money to her campaign just to pad her and her husband’s pockets. This alone makes it clear to me that she is one wickedly crooked politician who is not at all concerned for those who would vote for her.
In addition to the crooked finances of this former State Treasurer and Representative Cynthia Lummis has also shown herself to be a hypocrite as she proudly chose to stand on the platform of Wyoming being “The Equality State” as shown in the video below, while voting time and again against women’s rights and equality.
In spite of Cynthia’s professed pride in being a woman from the so-called “Equality State” Cynthia Lummis tows the party line when it comes to backing the Romney fantasy about the War on Women actually being perpetrated by the Obama Administration. To quote her directly, she says that “The Obama policies have failed. In fact, they’ve made the economy worse, and they’ve made it worse particularly for women.”
Cynthia is lying. She is using her “equality” platform to act as though she were a fine woman to speak up for poorMrs. Romney and her trouble being a stay at home mom of five houses, (aka: stay at homes mom of five boys. ) Frankly, it isn’t surprising to me at all that Cynthia came to the Romney’s defense as her well-padded pockets and hypocritical view points on women’s rights show that Cynthia and The Romney’s are right in kind with one another.
These people claim that President Obama and his liberal doctrine are bad for women, but the image above shows they are wrong. Here we have all 50 states plus Washington D.C. ranked by the disparity in pay between men and women. As you can see, in DC women make about 91 cents for every dollar men make. In Wyoming, which has had the Equality State Mascot – Cynthia Lummis as representation for 24 years, is at the bottom with women earning 64 cents on the dollar. The blue represents a state that voted for Barack Obama in 2008 and the red represents a state that voted for McCain. It is clear that the republican ideology and those who support it are not serving the women of this country.
Cynthia stands on the shoulders of women who fought hard to earn suffrage and claims their victory as her own while proudly waiving Wyoming’s flag of Equality and full well knowing that she voted for many anti-women laws like the Blunt Amendment, which would have given employers permission to leave women’s reproductive healthcare out of the insurance packages earned through employment if the employer had a conscience objection to providing such care. She voted for the Ultrasound Informed Consent Act which was a bill to ensure that women seeking an abortion receive an ultrasound and the opportunity to review the ultrasound before giving informed consent to receive an abortion. Cynthia is working with other GOP leaders to try to overturn Obamacare, knowing that in Wyoming a woman pays 75%-100% more for health insurance than a man does without its protections.
By standing in front of America and acting as though she should represent women just because she claims to have lady parts, Cynthia Lummis is hijacking the discussion from real American women. Go back people. Listen to her video again. Cynthia clearly states that the women of courage, the ones who changed Wyoming and the world for the better, weren’t rich cattle baronesses from the city of Cheyenne like Cynthia. Actually, they were regular, strong hearted Laramie women, like me, who bettered this place, who voted first and made it possible for her to screw us over in congress as she does today.
Perhaps Cynthia Lummis ought to step down off of her high horse, and start looking the women of Wyoming, whom she claims to champion, in the eye. She should stop stuffing her pockets with money and ask herself how she can represent us because voting against women’s reproductive health and spreading lies about the president isn’t helping anybody but the Romneys and their new friend Cynthia. I am not going to sit here and watch her do it. I remember the reason that so many women a century ago fought for that right to vote and I look forward to casting my vote in favor of her challenger Chris Henrichsen this fall.
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