During a press conference Thursday, Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi said Americans "should be afraid" of the Supreme Court as it stands now, due to the fact that cases like Burwell v. Hobby Lobby Stores, Inc. are being decided by a predominantly conservative male court. Megyn Kelly thinks this is sexism.
According to a brief, edited clip aired on The Kelly Files Thursday (which was also posted on Politico as well), what Pelosi said was this:
And really, we should be afraid of this court, that five guys should be determining what contraceptions are legal or not – let's not even go there. It's so stunning. That court decision was a frightening one, that five men should get down to the specifics about whether a woman should use a diaphragm and if she should pay for it herself or her boss. It's not her boss's business.
What Nancy Pelosi actually said was in response to a question about possible passage of the Employment Nondiscrimination Act. She articulated her concern that the conservative, male members of the Supreme Court are going haywire with their rulings about female contraception – which they are:
Yes, I think it would be a great advance if we could get that bill, but there is resistance now because of a change in the dynamic in terms of fear of the court. And really, we should be afraid of this court. That five guys should start determining what contraceptions are legal. Let's not even go there. It is so stunning and, of course, this is more like the Wheaton decision a few days later which was also problematic. But that court decision was a frightening one. That five men should get down to the specifics of whether a woman should use a diaphragm and she should pay for it herself or her boss. It's not her boss's business. The business is whatever his business is, but it's not what contraception she uses.
So the court decision is – we are all taken aback by it. So we will meet and build our consensus around what we would do. But before the court decision, yeah, I would say I would have voted for the bill as I celebrated its passage in the United States Senate because it is a giant step forward.
On her show, as Politico also pointed out, Kelly responded to this by saying that Pelosi was sexist and inaccurate. She also called out the dangerous liberal for not covering the inaccuracy of Pelosi's comments:
Nancy Pelosi either doesn't know what she is talking about or is intentionally misleading you. First of all, the gender of the justices in the Hobby Lobby majority is totally irrelevant. Ms. Pelosi's reference to it is obviously an attempt to stoke resentment. When Roe v. Wade was decided, it was all men in the majority. Does Ms. Pelosi think those justices were ill-equipped to fairly decide that case? Or is it only when a judge disagrees with Ms. Pelosi that his gender is an issue? If Speaker John Boehner made a similar comment about the female Supreme Court justices, Nancy Pelosi would be crying sexism and that's what she is guilty of here.
Kelly went on to call Pelosi's comments a "gross misrepresentation" of what the Hobby Lobby ruling was about which, if taken at face value, is true. But since I'm a member of the liberal, left-wing media, I'd argue that Pelosi's statements, when actually placed in their context, demonstrate that she was speaking in hyperbole. Pelosi – like the female members of the Supreme Court – is concerned about what else this court is capable of.
Additionally, though Kelly thinks that because the religious freedom law Hobby Lobby was concerned with was co-sponsored by Nancy Pelosi, she's somehow being hypocritical for criticizing how it's been interpreted. No. Given her history with it, Pelosi has even more right to be upset now.
Lastly, it's not sexism to point out the truth. As their fellow justices have explained, the male justices who voted with Hobby Lobby have demonstrated that they are siding with corporations, not people – specifically, female people. The gender of the men on the court during Roe v. Wade would have been relevant had they similarly demonstrated that they were voting without concern for 50 percent of the country's population.
And if we're going to continue to go down this path of "what ifs," if John Boehner did make a comment about how the female Supreme Court justices dissented against the Hobby Lobby decision because they were women, that wouldn't be sexism – it would also be true. They are women who see that these rulings are being purposefully decided by a court stacked against them. That's sexism.