House Women Defend Rice Over Libya Comments

The lawmakers suggested that Republicans are bitter about the president's re-election and are taking it out on U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice. 

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U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice (Andrew Burton/Getty Images News)

A dozen female members of the House said Friday that Republican senators' repeated and angry criticism of U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice's handling of the deadly Sept. 11 attack in Libya reeks of sexism and racism, according to the Associated Press.

In unusually personal terms, the Democratic women lashed out at Sens. John McCain and Lindsey Graham who earlier this week called Rice unqualified and untrustworthy and promised to scuttle her nomination if President Barack Obama nominates her to succeed Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton.

"All of the things they have disliked about things that have gone on in the administration, they have never called a male unqualified, not bright, not trustworthy," said Rep. Marcia Fudge, D-Ohio, the next chairwoman of the Congressional Black Caucus. "There is a clear sexism and racism that goes with these comments being made by unfortunately Sen. McCain and others."

At a Capitol Hill news conference, the female lawmakers, the majority of them African American like Rice, suggested that the Republicans are bitter about Obama's re-election and taking it out on U.N. ambassador.

"To batter this woman because they don't feel they have the ability to batter President Obama is something we the women are not going to stand by and watch," said Rep. Gwen Moore, D-Wis. "Their feckless and reckless speculation is unworthy of their offices as senators."

Read more at the Associated Press.

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