A word with Elise Stefanik (2) [with comment by Paul]

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This concludes my report on an interview with Rep. Elise Stefanik yesterday afternoon. I posted the first installment here, including my daughter Eliana’s 2014 NR profile of her just before she became the youngest woman elected to Congress at the time.

I mentioned to Rep. Stefanik how much I admired women standing up to run for office on our side because of the abuse to which they subject themselves. Unlike their Democratic counterparts, the abuse won’t be offset by features glamorizing them in the fashion magazines. We’re not holding our breath for Stefanik’s 2020 class to be featured by Glamour in a shot like this one, for example.

“You need a thick skin,” she said, “and it’s not just women.” She cited Senator Tim Scott. “They are vicious and vile” — you know who “they” are — “and they can get away with it because the media allow them to.”

She noted that Nancy Pelosi’s super PAC devoted special attention to fending off Republican women candidates. This is the subtext of the Politico story “Pelosi-aligned super PAC adds $18M to fall ad buys.”

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With the help of contributions that rolled in during the House Intelligence Committee impeachment hearing — I made one to her myself — Stefanik explained that her own E-PAC was able to max out in support of its candidates. Here is a complete list of candidates supported by E-PAC who have won or are projected to win this cycle:

Young Kim (CA-39)
Michelle Steel (CA-48)
Lauren Boebert (CO-03)
Kat Cammack (FL-03)
Maria Elvira Salazar (FL-27)
Ashley Hinson (IA-01)
Mariannette Miller-Meeks (IA-02)*
Mary Miller (IL-15)
Victoria Spartz (IN-05)
Lisa McClain (MI-10)
Michelle Fischbach (MN-07)
Yvette Herell (NM-02)
Nicole Malliotakis (NY-11)
Claudia Tenney (NY-22)*
Stephanie Bice (OK-05)
Nancy Mace (SC-01)
Diana Harshberger (TN-01)
Beth Van Duyne (TX-24)

Stefanik mentioned that several of these candidates are “firsts.” Nancy Mace, for example, is the first female graduate of Citadel and first woman in Congress from South Carolina. She must be one tough cookie. She might also be the first former Waffle House waitress to make it to Congress.

Young Kim and Michelle Steel are the first Korean American women in Congress, Yvette Herrell is the first Cherokee American woman in Congress, and Stephanie Bice is the first Iranian American woman in Congress. If these women were Democrats, they would be on their way to celebrity status.

Stefanik also pointed out the GOP members among the incoming freshman whose families come from Communist countries: Victoria Spartz (born in Ukrainian SSR), Nicole Malliotakis (daughter of Cuban mother), Carlos Giménez (immigrant from Cuba), and Maria Elvira Salazar (daughter of Cuban parents). Malliotakis may start an anti-socialist “squad.” They all have a valuable perspective on the present discontents.

Stefanik answered my last question before I asked it: what’s on the horizon? “I’m already hearing from women who to want to run in 2022,” she said.

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I was struck by how forthcoming and forthright Rep. Stefanik was as we spoke. She is a bright light who is making an important contribution to the conservative cause.

PAUL ADDS: I’m proud to say that Rep. Stefanik was a Power Line pick when she first ran for Congress in 2014. My older daughter brought her to our attention.

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