3 Ways Governor Romney Failed Massachusetts Women

Even though Mitt Romney’s “binders full of women” comment is old news, the questions that it raises remain vital: Would a Romney administration promote or marginalize women? Would women benefit or be penalized by Romney’s policies regarding access to health care, reproductive choice and equal pay, among others? As governor of Massachusetts, Romney established a clear record regarding his treatment of women. Let’s check it out.

1. Romney’s judicial appointments consisted primarily of white men.

According to an article in the Boston Herald, “While claiming he wants more minorities and women on the bench, Romney has stacked his new Judicial Nominating Commission [JNC] mainly with white males. There are only four minorities — three of them women — among the new slate of 17 JNC members, Romney spokeswoman Julie Teer confirmed. The other 13 are white men. She declined comment when asked whether a more diverse panel was needed.” In a follow-up story, the Herald continued, “Despite his claim that his hand-picked advisers gave him too few qualified women for judicial slots, Gov. Mitt Romney has passed over numerous female applicants even after they cleared a tough screening process.”

The Associated Press reported that two years into his term as governor, “Romney found himself under fire for not nominating enough women and minorities to the bench. Of the 19 nominations made by Romney by early 2005, 17 were men and only two were women.” At the end of his term, he had appointed only 18 women out of a total of 65 judges.

2. Romney vetoed a bill that would require hospitals to give emergency contraception to rape victims.

The Huffington Post confirms that “As governor of Massachusetts in 2005, Romney took a harder line on contraception, vetoing a widely-supported bill that would make the morning-after pill available over the counter in that state and require hospitals to offer emergency contraception to rape victims. His surprising veto did not stand. The Massachusetts state Senate voted unanimously to overrule it, and the state House voted 139-16 to do the same.”

3. On several occasions, Romney vetoed funds for breast and cervical cancer detection, treatment and prevention.

In 2004, Romney vetoed funds for early breast cancer detection and research. In the same year, Romney vetoed funds for cervical and breast cancer treatment. According to the Lowell Sun, “Romney vetoed the entire $2.8 million earmark for cervical and breast cancer treatment [and] cut $6.6 million, a little more than half, from a program to counsel first-time mothers under 21.”

Throughout his term, Romney continued to veto or reduce various funding appropriations for early breast cancer detection. He also targeted funding for various preventative programs, from breast cancer and AIDS research to teen pregnancy, despite being cautioned against such measures by his own Lt. Governor, Kerry Healey.

Bonus things:

In 2008, Romney admitted that he was “not familiar” with the Violence Against Women Act. In the second presidential debate, he refused to say whether he would have voted for the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, a bill that his running mate Paul Ryan voted against. He has continually asserted that a Romney administration would move to eliminate all funds for Planned Parenthood, an organization that millions of women rely upon for basic health care.

It’s easy to snicker at Romney’s inept “binders full of women” remark, with its creepy Hugh Hefner-esque resonance. However, the very fact that his closest advisors couldn’t come up with names of qualified women for Romney’s Massachusetts administration and had to ask local women’s groups for those binders of resumes should give women everywhere pause. And Romney’s record with regard to women, which no “change of heart” can erase, well, it scares the estrogen out of me.


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Pamela Tracy
Pamela Tracy3 years ago

First i must say the other comments are veryyyyyyyy interesting...of course he should not be president..putting his dog on the roof of his car or whatever....you all should live here in Montana..the police and city do nothing to dog or cat abusers.......i have proof...

Some people think living in Montana an animal should be treated like some wild animal that roams our mountains outside of town...

Secondly, really she did not want to wake her husband when she was having a miscarriage...God help him when he gets to the pearly gates....of course he will get there probably because his woman will wish him there .....



A N M.
anne M.3 years ago

Romney abuses his dog and doesn't want to bother to take his pregnant wife to the hospital when she has a miscarriage (she was afraid to wake up her lord and master), why would anybody expect him to care about other people? The man is brutal and cruel. Why would anybody even want to vote for him?

sheila h.
sheila haigh3 years ago

@Jacob R. - you think a female job applicant should be MORE qualified than a male applicant? Why???

By the way, female applicants are often more qualified than male applicants and still don't get the job. Ever wondered why? Because they can't join in the male wash-room banter. Nothing to do with their ability to do the job.

You think that's fair???

What is the physiological difference between a male and a female? None. Those dangly bits between your legs - they started life as a pair of ovaries. At a certain point in the development of the foetus a chemical wash in the uterus caused those ovaries to drop and become testicles.

And on that basis, you think that 49% of the population should have preferential treatment and priviledges over the 51%???

Come on.....get real!!

Susan Allen
SusanAWAY Allen3 years ago

You go Gene J. - awesome post, right on point!

Gene Jacobson
Gene Jacobson3 years ago

(continued) he gets his majorities in the House and Senate which I don't think is going to happen. He'd turn the clock back on nearly every issue, those relating to women first and foremost. As someone else said, I can't imagine why any woman would vote for this snake oil salesman other than on religion or anti choice grounds. And I, for all the reasons listed in the article and MANY more will vote to keep him out of the people's House because I have no desire to see women returned to the status of property, no desire to see our environment continue to be treated as a personal toy by the wealthy and every desire to see all Americans have the opportunity to achieve that will be granted only the upper crust under a Romney administration. Let go of your self-interest, Jacob, and look at the greater good, which will be served only by the re-election of President Obama and Democratic majorities in the Senate and House.

Gene Jacobson
Gene Jacobson3 years ago

Jacob? "Romney will not make female judicial appointments unless there are suitably qualified female candidates that are better qualified than the male candidates. Get over it! Appointing "token" female justices does not cut it with the majority of Americans."

I have a news flash for you. A majority of Americans ARE women. As to the rest of your disingenuous post, well, the article covers it quite well. Mitt likes Stepford Wives, no surprise there given his upbringing and religion, in his world, women bear children and raise them and that's about it. The rest of the world, however, has a more enlightened outlook on women. They are more than half the population, they are highly qualified (because of that glass ceiling they have to work harder than men to obtain the same jobs - which is why I use exclusively women professionals, they're smarter, worked harder and work hard now and I get the best of the best as I need them) and there is no justifiable reason for the actions Mitt took as Governor, nor any surprise he was thwarted by the legislature overriding his veto's. A Romney administration would be a white male, well a rich white male, wet dream, full of opportunity to wreak havoc on the unsuspecting public, and that it would do. A return to the policies of the 19th century, repudiating tactics used by Nixon, Reagan and both Bush presidents would have this economy turned upside down in freefall within 18 months, if that long. Provided, of course, he gets his major

Susan Allen
SusanAWAY Allen3 years ago

Norma J. you could not be more wrong and pitiful.

Susan Allen
SusanAWAY Allen3 years ago

Maryann, great response to Jacob R.

Nancy Black
Nancy Black3 years ago

Anyone who checks out Romney's past record can see that he discriminates against women. Anyone who listens to his speeches and debates should notice that he never directly answers a question about his position on women's rights. If he does say something positive, the next day his advisers explain that he misspoke. Any woman who is not wealthy enough to escape his discrimination will not be treated equally. That should mean that every woman should have sense to vote against him and to convince her family to do the same.

Maryann Burkholtz

Jacob R is still living in the Romney Fantasy land. Romney would do nothing for women. Only for men like you who are as woman hating as he is. He thinks of women as just sex objects and baby machines. First of all how dare you as a man decide who is good for me.I think all males should have to have a vasectomy at birth and then if and when they grow up, they could have it reversed. That would solve the abortion and birth control problem. You don't want me making decisions for you. It's time for you boys to experience the pain and the responsibility you are trying to force on us. Romney stinks and so do his policies.