Here’s What Trump’s Sexist Views Mean for the War on Women

This new ad targets women in swing states.


Donald Trump’s positions on women’s issues, previous statements about women, and long history of sexism have become central issues about his character during his campaign for the presidency. A new ad will go after the GOP candidate’s position on abortion by using his own words against him.

Planned Parenthood Votes and Priorities USA Action, the main super-PAC supporting the Hillary Clinton campaign, have created a new digital ad that will play as preroll footage on web videos, as well as on Facebook and Instagram. This is part of a larger ad campaign aimed at women in North Carolina, Nevada, and Pennsylvania, key swing states in the presidential contest.

The effort comes as the Trump campaign tries to push back against accusations that the Republican presidential candidate is sexist. During a Wednesday interview with a Las Vegas NBC affiliate, Trump addressed his history of demeaning statements toward women, saying that “a lot of that was done for the purpose of entertainment.”

The ad also appears days after the only vice presidential debate of the campaign cycle, where Trump’s running mate, Indiana Gov. Mike Pence, said that he “cannot conscience a party that supports” abortion. Pence, who recently said he wants to “send Roe v. Wade to the ash heap of history,” has signed several pieces of extreme anti-abortion legislation during his time as the governor of Indiana, including a bill that required that aborted fetuses be cremated or buried.  

The ad opens with Trump’s now infamous exchange with MSNBC’s Chris Matthews, in which he said, “There has to be some form of punishment” for women who get abortions, adding that he wanted to ban the procedure. The video also shows footage of Trump discussing his pro-life background and his desire to see Planned Parenthood defunded. “Donald Trump is too dangerous for women,” the video concludes.

“This is the most anti-woman ticket we’ve seen in decades. Donald Trump would ban abortion, defund Planned Parenthood, and even make it more difficult to access birth control,” Deirdre Schifeling, executive director of Planned Parenthood Votes, said in a statement. “We will not let Mike Pence and Donald Trump strip rights away from the women of America.”

The digital ads will run from October 10 through Election Day.

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WHO DOESN’T LOVE A POSITIVE STORY—OR TWO?

“Great journalism really does make a difference in this world: it can even save kids.”

That’s what a civil rights lawyer wrote to Julia Lurie, the day after her major investigation into a psychiatric hospital chain that uses foster children as “cash cows” published, letting her know he was using her findings that same day in a hearing to keep a child out of one of the facilities we investigated.

That’s awesome. As is the fact that Julia, who spent a full year reporting this challenging story, promptly heard from a Senate committee that will use her work in their own investigation of Universal Health Services. There’s no doubt her revelations will continue to have a big impact in the months and years to come.

Like another story about Mother Jones’ real-world impact.

This one, a multiyear investigation, published in 2021, exposed conditions in sugar work camps in the Dominican Republic owned by Central Romana—the conglomerate behind brands like C&H and Domino, whose product ends up in our Hershey bars and other sweets. A year ago, the Biden administration banned sugar imports from Central Romana. And just recently, we learned of a previously undisclosed investigation from the Department of Homeland Security, looking into working conditions at Central Romana. How big of a deal is this?

“This could be the first time a corporation would be held criminally liable for forced labor in their own supply chains,” according to a retired special agent we talked to.

Wow.

And it is only because Mother Jones is funded primarily by donations from readers that we can mount ambitious, yearlong—or more—investigations like these two stories that are making waves.

About that: It’s unfathomably hard in the news business right now, and we came up about $28,000 short during our recent fall fundraising campaign. We simply have to make that up soon to avoid falling further behind than can be made up for, or needing to somehow trim $1 million from our budget, like happened last year.

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