As we reported last year, rumors have been swirling about Ashley Judd running for senate against Minority Leader Mitch McConnell. While Judd still won’t confirm rumors, she spoke at George Washington University in D.C. last week, her first public appearance in the city since news of the rumored beginnings of her political career began.
Judd shied away from directly speaking about the potential political run, merely referring to it as “the elephant in the room.” But Judd addressed many other issues, mainly those related to women. She spoke about her experiences working to promote women’s reproductive health and public health issues, praised Congress for passing the Violence Against Women Act and her concerns about women in combat mainly tied to military rape.
Judd also spoke candidly about her own rape.
I’m a three-time survivor of rape, and about that I have no
shame, because it was never my shame to begin with–it was the perpetrator’s
shame. And only when I was a grown, empowered adult and had healthy boundaries
and had the opportunity to do helpful work on that trauma was I able to say, ‘OK, that perpetrator was shameless, and put their shame on me.’ Now I gave
that shame back, and it’s my job to break my isolation and talk with other
girls and other women.
While Judd’s very political talk in D.C. confirms nothing about her political future, there is already backlash. In a piece at The Daily Caller, entertainment editor, Taylor Bigler, argues that Judd has nothing left to show anyone–political or otherwise–because she has been naked in films.
But will Judd be the first potential senator who has —
literally — nothing left to show us? The actress has bared her breasts in
several films and has had some raunchy sex scenes in others.
Gross. And also, insanely irrelevant. As Alyssa Rosenberg at Think Progress smartly takes down Bigler, she notes that it’s a sign of how anxious the right is even about the possibility of Judd running against McConnell to already be attacking her.
In January, the Louisville Courier-Journal did a poll finding that 17% of those polled were planning on voting for McConnell’s reelection, a third said they would vote against him and 44% said they would wait to see who was running against him. Sounds like their fears are rooted in that Judd has the major potential to win against McConnell.