- Raised more than $100,000 per month since launching “witch hunt” into Planned Parenthood and New Mexico abortion providers
- Fiscal conservative buys Miami Beach hotels, chartered flights, private car service and top-dollar dinners with campaign funds
One of Tennessee’s most conservative Republican Congresswomen is spending a lot of time focussed on women living 1,200 miles from her Volunteer State district.
After the series of doctored anti-Planned Parenthood videos were launched last year, Republican Congresswoman Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) launched an investigation into women’s healthcare providers through an obscure Congressional panel created by House Republican leadership.
Her first target: New Mexico women.
News outlets – notably including the Washington Post – have dismissed her quest as a “witch hunt,” but the Albuquerque Journal and a handful of conservative news outlets have put her quixotic quest on their front pages.
That got us thinking: Who is this Tennessee Congresswoman with a target on New Mexico women?
You’d be forgiven if you didn’t know that Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) actually started a campaign for President in 2014.
In a year when crazy went mainstream, her own brand of crazy barely got noticed.
Since then, she doubled down on her efforts to raise her own profile and convinced House Republican leaders to name her chair of an obscure Congressional panels most people would never notice.
From the Washington Post:
TWELVE STATES that undertook investigations of Planned Parenthood found no wrongdoing. An additional eight states refused even to investigate, citing lack of credible evidence. A grand jury in Texas and a federal judge in California exonerated the organization after each conducted extensive reviews. Threecongressional committees failed to turn up any improprieties. In short, the hidden-camera videos purporting to show illegal selling of fetal tissue show no such thing.
Despite all that, a Republican-led House panel is undeterred in conducting its own investigation, or, more accurately, witch hunt.
That inquiry hasn’t produced much actual work. But it has produced lots of headlines in conservative news outlets that Blackburn has used to raise money for her own campaign.
She started by announcing her chairmanship on her campaign website, right next to a big ‘ol “contribute” button.
In the 6 months since Blackburn launched her mini-committee investigation, she has raised more than $699,000 for her campaign, providing her with more than $2.3 million in the bank, according to Federal Election Commission reports.
And all that fundraising is helping Blackburn have a pretty good time in DC.
According to reports filed on the Federal Election Commission, Blackburn has spent:
- $14,207 on meals and catering from restaurants in Washington, Michigan and Miami Beach
- $1,454 on top-tier Miami Beach hotels
- $635 on a private “chartered flight”
- $568 on a personal “car service”
Back home, she spent $29,902 on food and wine including more than $10,000 in catering from “Possom Holler” and “HSC Wine.”
The case for crazy made by Marsha Blackburn
This isn’t Blackburn’s first run at queen of right-wing conspiracies.
Here are a few stories that tell you everything you need to know:
Spoiler Alert: Blackburn is listed as the “chief opponent” of a bill to prevent “wrapping their hooves in corrosive chemicals and then applying chains or bands to the wounds in order to create an artificially high-stepping gait” in show horses. Her local paper later reported that a showhorse lobbying group held a fundraiser for Blackburn in her district before the vote.
Anti-Planned Parenthood investigation called “witch hunt,” people behind the allegations now facing felony charges for lying
Blackburn’s “witch hunt” (actually the words the Washington Post used to describe it) against Planned Parenthood and New Mexico abortion providers, has been thoroughly discredited as partisan and self-serving by mainstream press.
Even the Albuquerque Journal’s coverage of it received criticism from former Journal reporters and media watchdogs.
Read more about the unraveling of Blackburn’s investigation here.