A press release distributed by Sen. Mitch McConnell’s (R-KY) campaign at a “Women for Team Mitch” event on Friday brags about the Senate Minority Leader’s support for the Violence Against Women Act, even though McConnell voted against the measure in 1994, 2012, and 2013.
“Mitch was the co-sponsor of the original Violence Against Women Act — and continues to advocate for stronger polices to protect women. I am proud to call him my senator,” the document quotes a voter as saying.
Joe Sonka, a staff writer for Louisville’s Alt-Weekly first tweeted a copy of the release, hinting at the contradiction and noting that McConnell didn't address women’s issues at the event or take any questions from women. Former Congresswoman Anne Northup, a spokesperson for the campaign, also told Sonka that McConnell supported bills like the Lilly Ledbetter Act and Paycheck Fairness Act — both of which McConnell voted against — “make the workplace more difficult for women.”
McConnell has embellished often on his voting record in the past, insisting that he voted against VAWA because he sought a stronger version. During the event, McConnell’s wife, former Labor Secretary Elaine Chao, also claimed that her husband supports increasing cancer screenings and check-ups for women, even though he is campaigning on repealing the Affordable Care Act, which specifically increases women’s access to preventive medicine.