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Another Campaign Blunder

Joe Ranvestel

Posted on October 17, 2018 19:39

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Senator Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakota is receiving criticism for an ill-fated political campaign move.

During these midterm elections, we've seen the #MeToo movement become a key feature in the talking points used by different politicians. Heidi Heitkamp, the senator from North Dakota, used this movement in an unconventional and controversial way.

In an open letter she wrote to her political opponent, published in a North Dakota newspaper over the weekend, she chastised him for comments he made during the Kavanaugh confirmation hearings. However, at the end of this letter, she published the names of one hundred and twenty seven women who were supposed survivors of domestic violence, rape, and sexual assault. This was done without their knowledge or consent. What's more, some of the women listed have come forth and denied even being sexual assault survivors in the first place.

Heitkamp has since apologized, and the staffer who helped gather this list has been fired.

While we've seen misuse of the once well-intentioned #MeToo movement before, this seems to be a new low point in how the movement is used. With a desire for women's health and well-being in mind, it seems to be a foolish move to publish this information without their consent. These women, some of whom claim to not even be survivors, are now risking social stigma and, at worst, potential retaliation from their attackers.

As a political move, this also seems to have been a risky blunder, as Heitkamp was already running a close campaign.

While I speculate that there may be future lawsuits from the incident, and a dent in Heitkamp's political standing, hopefully the women she named are able to remain unscathed from this event.

 

 

Joe Ranvestel

Posted on October 17, 2018 19:39

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