Hot Mic Captures Senator Ridiculing “Unattractive” Colleague Who Wanted to Duel Her

“Did you see the picture of him in his pajamas next to this bunny?”

Last Friday, Rep. Blake Farenthold (R-Texas), a big supporter of the Republican effort to repeal Obamacare and replace it with…something, said he would challenge Republican “female senators from the Northeast” to a duel for opposing that effort, if only they weren’t women.

There is only one Republican female senator from the Northeast opposed to the bill. Her name is Susan Collins (R-Maine).

Cut to today. The Republicans are planning to vote on an Obamacare repeal bill. Collins was talking to a male senator, reportedly Jack Reed (D-R.I.), and the private conversation was caught on a CSPAN hot mic: 

Collins: Did you see the one who challenged me to a duel?

Reed: Trust me, you know why he challenged you to a duel? Because you could beat the shit out of him.

Collins: He’s so unattractive, it’s unbelievable. Did you see the picture of him in his pajamas next to this bunny, Playboy bunny?

Here is the photo she is referring to:

Farenthold, who was once sued by a staffer for sexual harassment (the claim was settled outside of court), has yet to comment. 

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THE BIG PICTURE

You expect the big picture, and it's our job at Mother Jones to give it to you. And right now, so many of the troubles we face are the making not of a virus, but of the quest for profit, political or economic (and not just from the man in the White House who could have offered leadership and comfort but instead gave us bleach).

In "News Is Just Like Waste Management," we unpack what the coronavirus crisis has meant for journalism, including Mother Jones’, and how we can rise to the challenge. If you're able to, this is a critical moment to support our nonprofit journalism with a donation: We've scoured our budget and made the cuts we can without impairing our mission, and we hope to raise $400,000 from our community of online readers to help keep our big reporting projects going because this extraordinary pandemic-plus-election year is no time to pull back.

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