Missouri Tradeswomen Slam Josh Hawley for Supporting Harrison Butker’s Speech

Photo Illustration by Thomas Levinson/The Daily Beast/Getty
Photo Illustration by Thomas Levinson/The Daily Beast/Getty
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A group of Missouri tradeswomen took Republican Sen. Josh Hawley to task over his support for Harrison Butker, the Kansas City Chiefs kicker who stoked uproar when he said American women should embrace traditional homemaking roles rather than fall for “diabolical lies” advanced by feminists and progressives.

“When Harrison Butker told a group of young college graduates that working women like us have fallen for ‘diabolical lies’ by providing for our families, Senator Josh Hawley had a chance to stand up for us and for our freedom,” the women said in an open letter obtained by The Daily Beast.

“Instead, Hawley showed us his true colors by defending that message.”

The open letter was signed by 55 Missouri women, union members including carpenters, auto workers, and ironworkers.

In his speech at Benedictine College in Kansas last month, Butker told students: “I think it is you, the women, who have had the most diabolical lies told to you.

“Some of you may go on to lead successful careers in the world, but I would venture to guess that the majority of you are most excited about your marriage and the children you will bring into this world. I can tell you that my beautiful wife Isabelle would be the first to say that her life truly started when she started living her vocation as a wife and as a mother.”

Butker also said his wife embraced “one of the most important titles of all: homemaker.”

Like Butker, Hawley is a stringent social conservative. The senator’s own wife, Erin Hawley, is a prominent anti-abortion lawyer.

Amid heated controversy over Butker’s remarks, Hawley told Spectrum News: “I’m not going to go in for all of this lefty garbage and I just thought that his calls for folks to stand up and be bold was great.”

Hawley has also spoken of his friendship with Butker, who since his Benedictine College speech has complained of “a shocking level of hate” sent his way.

In their open letter, the Missouri tradeswomen conceded that Butker “has a right to say and believe what he wants.” But turning to the kicker’s friend and ally, they said: “The problem for us is this—Josh Hawley has taken this obsession with controlling how women live to elected office.

“Hawley voted against the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act. He’s attacked no-fault divorce laws. He cut overtime pay for more than 200,000 Missouri workers, including women who provide their families’ only source of income. And he’s led the charge to take away the freedom to choose how we build our families and what we do with our bodies.”

Hawley, the women said, “thinks it takes courage for a pair of millionaires to tell young women that most of them should be homemakers instead of choosing to follow their own dreams—and that somehow the condemnation of that message makes that pair the victims.

“That’s not surprising, since he also thinks it’s courageous for a millionaire politician to say things like “home is a promise given to a husband, made possible only by a wife” and that it’s the “man’s job is to provide for his family” in a book titled Manhood.”

Subtitled The Masculine Virtues America Needs, Hawley’s third book was published in the U.S. last year. Among mainstream critics, it was not received kindly. Some, like Hawley’s political opponents, cited the absence of any discussion of perhaps the senator’s most famous act as a man on the national stage: being filmed running from Jan. 6 rioters he had encouraged.

Hawley did not respond to a request for comment.

The Missouri tradeswomen said: “When Josh Hawley calls himself ‘pro-worker,’ he doesn’t mean us—working women. He thinks it’s his job to tell us how to live. It isn’t. His job is to protect our freedom and invest in our communities so we can raise our families as we see fit.

“So our advice to Josh is this: You start doing your job. We’ll keep doing ours.”

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