Democratic presidential contender, Hillary Clinton, received a potentially knockout blow yesterday when a large number of feminist groups turned their backs to her, after her comments about “cleaning the house”.
“It is time for us to clean house, and one thing women know how to do – we know how to clean house”, Clinton reportedly said addressing a massive crowd in Philadelphia, last month.
“It’s a horribly horribly conservative remark”, a statement by spokesperson of a leading feminist organization said. “What Clinton is implying is that it’s for men like Bush to dirty the house and women need to come and clean it. That’s such a patriarchal position to take. It’s an insult to every women in the world”
Clinton said that “[my] remarks have been taken out of context. It’s the Obama camp that has created a controversy out of this non-issue. I was tired after climbing up the steps of the podium and the words came out in a way I never intended them to be”
Explaining what she meant by her remarks, she said on live television: “There is no question of supporting patriarchal world views. I can assure you that I can keep the house as dirty as the feminists want it”
As they went offline for a commercial break, however, she reportedly said: “Oops, I did it again”.
American feminists, however, are not ready to buy this explanation.
“However tired one is, one understands what’s patriarchal and what’s not. We do not want a president who is just a pawn in the patriarchy”
Obama’s campaign spokeman Bill Burton has issued a strong statement condemning the remark: “It’s unfortunate that a woman, and a Democrat at that, should make a Conservative remark like that. Such a remark has no place in this campaign”
“When it comes to cleaning the house” Obama said “we will show that anyone whose heart is clean, can do the job as good as anyone – woman or man, black or white, rich or poor. We must believe that we want a change — that we want a clean house, and we will all work to get there, each and every American”
Meanwhile, it’s unclear why it took the feminists a month to realize the insult. Couple of groups we spoke maintained that they had spotted the instance rightaway but they were debating the course of action.