FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
MARCH 13, 2019
Contact: Kaleb Harmon
Louisiana Democratic Party Condemns LAGOP, Former Chair Roger Villere Following Sexist Comments
BATON ROUGE, LA – On Wednesday, the Louisiana Democratic called upon the LAGOP and former LAGOP Chair Roger Villere to reform their practices following Villere’s sexist comments.
“It’s no wonder Louisiana elects less women when this is how one of our major party’s leaders treats their female candidates,” Sen. Karen Carter Peterson, Chair of the Louisiana Democratic Party said. “Louisiana women deserve to have a seat at the table. These statements by Chairman Villere shows the stark contrast between our two parties. As party leaders, it’s our responsibility to put the work in to make our government reflect the people it serves. That starts with recruiting, supporting and encouraging women to run – not making sexist comments about them. It’s a shame Roger and the LAGOP don’t share that view. It’s clear they don’t have women’s best interest in mind.”
“In a rare bit of candor, the former LAGOP Chairman showed their institutionalized sexism and admitted to purposefully not working with women candidates – going as far as to question the ones currently serving,” Stephen Handwerk, Louisiana Democratic Party Executive Director said. “Roger is the father of the current LAGOP; for nearly a decade, he led their party. We now see exactly how he led. The question is – is this still their policy? Do their members believe that women are too emotional to hold office? I’ll make the prediction that they will continue this policy. Meanwhile, to the women of Louisiana – the Democratic Party is open for business. It is high time women were respected equally and paid equally – we need their voices now more than ever.”
Villere said that he wasn’t “going to go with a weak Republican woman who doesn’t really want to run” while also implying that women are inherently worse at fundraising than their male counterparts.
Villere continued on his tirade by claiming that “[t]he guys, for the most part, let a lot of the vitriol bounce off of them. You’ll see them attack one another in the morning and then they’re out at a party, kidding around with one another. Whereas the ladies tend to hold a grudge a little longer.”
This is the second time this month that the LAGOP has made discriminatory remarks toward women. During International Women’s Day, the LAGOP blatantly chose to ignore the accomplishments of billions of women around the world in a press release they publicly issued. They later redacted and revised the release with no comment, notice or apology of the incident in hand.
Louisiana is the 3rd worst state in regards to number of women serving in the state Legislature with GOP women making up an abysmal 13% of all GOP legislators.