by Jeremy Young | 4/06/2008 09:43:00 PM
Myth:

Democrat Hillary Rodham Clinton laid claim Sunday to Montana's famed female trailblazer — Jeannette Rankin, who in 1916 became the first woman ever elected to Congress.

"Remember, Jeannette Rankin was elected before women could vote. So who says men don't vote for a woman?" Clinton told an audience crowded into an airport hangar here. (emphasis mine)


Reality:

1914: Nevada and Montana enfranchise women. (emphasis mine)


We all know Senator Clinton's truthtelling skills are legendary. Now suffrage historians know it too. Way to go, Senator Clinton -- very classy.

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11 Comments:


Blogger KC Johnson on 4/07/2008 4:45 AM:

Given that Sen. Clinton has raised the issue of plagiarism in this campaign, I confess that Jeremy beat me to the idea of this post :)

 

Blogger Jeremy Young on 4/07/2008 12:26 PM:

Heh -- by a whopping six minutes!

 

Blogger Heather on 4/07/2008 12:44 PM:

Well, nobody's yelled at me yet today, so I guess I can step into the rhetorical minefield. :-) First of all, Hillary Clinton is hardly unique as a politician in using spurious factoids while trying to coattail to a historical figure -- a certain Illinois senator who tries to tie himself to Abraham Lincoln springs to mind. Second, she would hardly be the first person to think of suffrage in terms of the national constitutional mandate and forget that some of the Western states had given women the franchise a bit earlier. It's unfortunate that she's lost that all-important suffragist historian vote, but I'm not sure it's all that much of a gaff, all things considered.

 

Blogger Jeremy Young on 4/07/2008 1:06 PM:

Well, it did make Political Punch, so at least some folks are talking about it.

But you're right, Obama's guilty of shaping history in his own image too. It just doesn't help that Hillary already has a reputation for playing fast and loose with the truth.

 

Blogger Heather on 4/07/2008 1:19 PM:

You'll have to forgive me if I come off as a bit shrill....this whole election is making me a bit punchy. :-)

 

Blogger Jeremy Young on 4/07/2008 1:54 PM:

Heh, me too. It helps that I don't really like any of the candidates, though I've endorsed Obama and plan to vote for him.

 

Blogger KcM on 4/07/2008 2:24 PM:

Well, according to the time stamps, I got you both by four hours. Booyah.

And, hey, we're on Political Punch and dKos now. We're suddenly the piqued suffragist historians/Rankinologists of the day. (I actually think I know more about Rankin & Bass than I do about Rankin, but, whatever. Hits are hits: I'll take it.)

 

Blogger KcM on 4/07/2008 2:46 PM:

Or two hours, as the case may be. Sorry...I was looking at the wrong time stamp. Hey, as the Clinton campaign continually reminds us, math is hard!

 

Blogger Jeremy Young on 4/07/2008 4:18 PM:

You're right -- congrats!

Where are we on dKos? I get all excited when they link to me on that place, since I used to post there under a pseudonym for years.

 

Blogger Jeremy Young on 4/07/2008 4:24 PM:

You know, I should really just check my sitemeter...

We're here. And also here.

 

Blogger histropolitics on 4/09/2008 4:05 PM:

Yes its a litte known fact (perhaps not among those here, but in the outside world) that women were voting all over the place long before 1920, and may have helped re-elect Wilson 1916, when California was crucial.