Sen. Nathan Dahm got what he wanted when implying the U.S. vice president slept her way into politics: attention.
The Broken Arrow Republican has a history of stoking flames with outlandish statements then thriving on the fallout. Criticizing Dahm for his actions has never tempered his behavior.
His latest antics go over a line of decency into the kind of sexist and misogynist attitudes women have endured for generations. Many women who obtain success — whether of liberal, conservative or independent political leanings — have been subjected to sexual innuendo.
It started with Dahm proposing to ban paper straws, which is the type of legislation voters are tired of lawmakers wasting their time on.
His press release equated paper straws with “leftist loons,” singling out prominent Democrats including a cryptic comment about Kamala Harris. In an interview with Tulsa’s KTUL-Channel 8, he alluded to oral sex.
It’s a demeaning dig at our nation’s first female vice president and highest ranking woman in U.S. history. Since 2003, Harris has been elected on her own merits as the San Francisco district attorney, California attorney general, U.S. senator and now vice president.
Many Oklahomans do not agree with policies and positions held by Harris. That does not give permission to engage in such despicable relics of male chauvinism.
State Sen. President Pro Tem Greg Treat did the honorable thing by quickly condemning Dahm’s words, saying he failed to live up to a “high standard of conduct and decorum.”
Words don’t carry weight with Dahm. His response was to post snarky memes online, mock political correctness and state “emotional opinions are irrelevant.”
Broken Arrow voters and Oklahomans deserve better than Dahm’s caustic and mean-spirited approach to governing.
It’s time for his fellow lawmakers to apply consequences.
Set a standard for what Oklahomans ought to expect in their elected officials. Let others taking office know this type of hateful rhetoric won’t be tolerated.
Dahm is term limited in 2024, but he needs to know now that this was no joke.