USA politician says female reporter must be accompanied by a male
USA politician says female reporter must be accompanied by a male
Mississippi governor candidate Female reporter must be joined by male colleague Rep. Robert Foster
11 July, 2019, 19:08
This week, Larrison Campbell, a reporter with the publication Mississippi Today, claimed she was told by Foster's campaign director, Colton Robinson, that unless a male colleague accompanied her on the 15-hour campaign trip, she wouldn't be able to shadow the Republican candidate.
Foster was responding to a report from Mississippi Today journalist Larrison Campbell.
"My editor and I agreed the request was sexist and an unnecessary use of resources", Campbell wrote.
Robison apparently told her the campaign "can't risk it" this close to the primary.
"In our case, it was a female reporter asking to ride along, and my campaign director is in and out and gone sometimes", Foster explained in his radio interview Wednesday.
"He reiterated that the campaign couldn't agree unless a male colleague was present - this despite my offering to wear a Mississippi Today press badge in plain view at all times".
Foster, she explained, has essentially said, " 'You can't do this because you're a woman and you're responsible for making me feel comfortable.' The problem is the notion that the woman carries the burden to make the man feel comfortable".
The Mississippi Republican had tweeted about it on Tuesday evening, referencing the late evangelist Billy Graham'spractice of not traveling, meeting or eating with another woman alone.
In another tweet, he claimed criticism of him was also an attack on people in MS who share his beliefs. "They can't believe, that even in 2019, someone still values their relationship with their wife and upholds their Christian faith". "Before our decision to run, my wife and I made a commitment to follow the 'Billy Graham Rule, ' which is to avoid any situation that may evoke suspicion or compromise of our marriage", he tweeted. "Exactly why we need a #msgov who will protect these values". She told the campaign she would be attending alone, but they would not change their mind, she said.
"Somebody posted on Facebook "he has to do this, this is the post-MeToo era ..."
"We can't talk about this without talking about perception being everything and if you're saying that the look of impropriety is out there, it's because you're saying that women don't belong in these spaces", Campbell said.
"There really wasn't any wiggle room, there was no getting around it", she said. After breaking the story, Campbell said, she has kept an eye on Foster - calling him an "interesting" candidate: a Hernando, Miss., native "running to the right of a very conservative lieutenant governor", but who also holds some more liberal views, like expanding Medicaid coverage. Campbell, having interacted with Foster and his team on several occasions, said she proposed to ride along with him.
Campbell recalled feeling "surprised and disappointed" during the call and said she asked Robison whether "the only reason I would be improperly linked to your candidate is that I'm a woman". "We just want it to be in an appropriate and professional setting that wouldn't provide opportunities for us to be alone".
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