On Sunday, Oct. 7, Taylor Swift posted a long-winded caption to a picture of herself reflecting her views on the mid-term elections of 2018. The post has received a pile of backlash due to her not addressing the topic until now and people are curious to know why she’s decided to speak out.
Swift mentions in her post the reasons why for not speaking up, what she thinks are the correct views for the United States, and who she’ll be voting for. Along with her thoughts, she mentions how she refuses to vote for Marsha Blackburn.
Marsha Blackburn is defined as a “conservative with a record of accomplishment,” according to her website. She is running in this year’s midterm election as Tennessee’s representative in the United States Senate.
Swift claims that Blackburn voted against equal pay for women, the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act, and doesn’t support LGBT rights. So, here’s the fact check.
Going back to 2009, Blackburn voted against the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act. The act was created for pay discrimination between men and women. Even though she voted against the act, her vote was outweighed, and the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act was the first law that Obama had signed only nine days into his term.
When interviewed by NBC’s Meet the Press on June 2, 2013, Blackburn gave her reasoning for her vote.
“You know, I’ve always said that I didn’t want to be given a job because I was a female, I wanted it because I was the most well-qualified person for the job. And making certain that companies are going to move forward in that vein, that is what women want.
They don’t want the decisions made in Washington. They want to be able to have the power and the control and the ability to make those decisions for themselves,” she said.
As for her stance on the reauthorization for Violence Against Women Act, Blackburn voted against the 2013 reauthorization because of specific terms with the act. On May 16, 2012, Blackburn issued a press release stating her views.
“As a mother and grandmother, it is extremely important to me that VAWA is reauthorized in order to ensure that victims of violence have access to the care they need and the justice they deserve,” she said.
Even though Blackburn publicized she believes in the act, she voted against the 2013 reauthorization because it was expanded to include the lives of the LGBT communities, Native Americans, and illegal immigrants.
According to Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation, Blackburn has a noticeable history of not supporting gay rights.
On June 26, 2015, Blackburn released a statement about the legalization of same-sex marriage in all 50 states.
“Today’s Supreme Court decision is a disappointment. I have always supported traditional marriage. Despite this decision, no one can overrule the truth about what marriage actually is — a sacred institution between a man and a woman,” said Blackburn.
Along with this statement, Blackburn has supported Trump’s ban on transgender military ban, she’s voted against the Sexual Orientation Employment Nondiscrimination Act, voted against the hate crime law expansion to protect LGBT lives, and more.
Time Magazine has publicized that even President Donald Trump has weighed in on the topic by backing Blackburn.
“She’s leading now substantially, which she should. She’s a tremendous woman. I’m sure Taylor Swift doesn’t know anything about her. Let’s say I like Taylor’s music about 25% less now, OK?” he said.
So, if all the facts mentioned by Swift add up, why is there a problem?
Maybe it’s the clap-back Blackburn had to Swifts comments. On Oct. 9, Blackburn was speaking with Fox News and brought up the Music Modernization Act and how the act was going to be signed by the president later in the week.
Vox Media mentions the act was created to “…streamlines the process by which music rights holders can be paid for their songs being played on streaming services.”
As for Blackburn’s response to Swift’s post, she mentioned that Swift stood to benefit by the act.
“I’ve been very active in that [Music Modernization Act] and Taylor Swift will benefit by that,” she said. Now that was some hot tea.
Even though the now pop singer has stated her opinions on the upcoming election, she is still being labeled ignorant by most news outlets. But if what she mentioned in her post about women and LGBT rights is backed by a record of Blackburn’s votes, why is there an uproar?
At the end of the day, all people are human. No matter your sexual orientation, political beliefs, or even just your overall beliefs.
People have a right to their opinions. Some may not believe in the same values, but that doesn’t give anyone the right to attack the other party for their views. Not saying that Swift is right or wrong, it’s just interesting how her statements line up with Blackburn’s voting records.
– Caton Deuso