In a May 20 column for The Nation, writer Katha Pollitt stated that she would “vote for Joe Biden if he boiled babies and ate them.”
The primary angle of the article by Pollitt appears to be to discredit Tara Reade, the former Biden staffer who has accused the presumptive Democratic nominee of sexually assaulting her in 1993.
“I would vote for Joe Biden if he boiled babies and ate them,” Pollitt admits at the top of the piece. “He wasn’t my candidate, but taking back the White House is that important.”
She continues, writing that another term for President Trump would mean a takeover by “religious fanatics, gun nuts, and know-nothings,” among other things. Near the end of the piece, Pollitt writes that even if one believes Tara Reade, whose case Pollitt claims is diminishing, “you should vote for Joe Biden if he is the nominee.”
The writer justifies her position that a vote for Biden is the “intelligent” thing to do in part by claiming that the former vice president would better support women’s rights. Pollitt then adds that voters frequently make trade-offs, stating that “Black Virginians stuck with Governor Ralph Northam despite his blackface scandal.”
“Were they hypocrites?” Pollitt asks.
Following the publishing of Pollitt’s article, there was strong backlash.
George Washington University Law Professor Jonathan Turley wrote: “Katha Pollitt has declared that she would support Biden ‘if he boiled babies and ate them.’ Biden has not issued a position on infanticide but politicians have long opposed the practice since Cronus. Unfortunately, the underlying sentiment is not unique…”
The professor added:
While Democrats denounced Trump for saying he could shoot someone on Fifth Avenue, Biden supporters like Pollitt have said equally disturbing things about their blind loyalty. Yet, Pollitt took a strikingly different position during the Kavanaugh controversy in her columns.
…While Democrats denounced Trump for saying he could shoot someone on Fifth Avenue, Biden supporters like Pollitt have said equally disturbing things about their blind loyalty. Yet, Pollitt took a strikingly different position during the Kavanaugh controversy in her columns.
— Jonathan Turley (@JonathanTurley) May 22, 2020
The Hill’s Krystal Ball tweeted: “This is deranged. A writer for The Nation says she would vote for Joe Biden even if he ate boiled babies. This is what many in the Democratic Party have collapsed to in the Trump era. A willingness to abandon all principle and justify literally anything if it will hurt Trump.”
Democrats used to have contempt for what they viewed as stupid MAGA cultists who would vote for Trump even if he shot someone on 5th ave. Now they have become what they hated.
— Krystal Ball (@krystalball) May 21, 2020
James Zogby tweeted: “Gross beyond words. On so many levels: political and personal. In what bizarre universe does ‘boiled babies’ become a metaphor to use for any purpose. Sick.”
Gross beyond words. On so many levels: political and personal. In what bizarre universe does “boiled babies” become a metaphor to use for any purpose. Sick.
— James J. Zogby (@jjz1600) May 21, 2020
Pollitt responded to her critics, tweeting: “Most of the negative comments about my Tara Reade piece are from tender souls horrified by the boiled babies in the lede. Some ppl don’t appreciate dark humor and comic overstatement. They must have a hard time in this fallen world.”
While some commenters offered support for Pollitt, others slammed the writer for her “dark humor.”
Pollitt’s comments come on the heels of other progressives who have stated that Tara Reade’s allegations against Biden wouldn’t stop them from voting for the former vice president.
Attorney Lisa Bloom tweeted that although she believes Reade and is “sorry,” she “will still support” Biden:
I believe you, Tara Reade.
You have people who remember you told them about this decades ago.
We know he is “handsy.”
You’re not asking for $.
You’ve obviously struggled mightily with this.
I still have to fight Trump, so I will still support Joe.
But I believe you. And I’m sorry https://t.co/eMUBrkkVFE
— Lisa Bloom (@LisaBloom) May 1, 2020
Author Linda Hirshman recently penned a piece for The New York Times titled: “I Believe Tara Reade. I’m Voting for Joe Biden Anyway.”
I think they should vote their heart, and if they believe Tara Reade, they probably shouldn’t vote for me. I wouldn’t vote for me if I believed Tara Reade.
When asked by George Stephanopoulos days earlier what he would tell those who refuse to vote for him because they believe Reade, Biden replied: “Well, that’s their right.”
The presumptive Democratic nominee further said that “women should be believed” and “have an opportunity to have their case,” but “the truth is this never happened.”
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