Harriet Harman has now made a 3rd statement in as many days attacking half the population, so it is clear that it is no gaffe on her part. So what does she hope to accomplish with these interventions?
I don't think it can be for the benefit of the Labour Party, they have won the male vote in every election since the war and jeopardising that while they are in such dire straits seems unlikely. I can't imagine that many women share Harman's views either. For the same reason I don't think she believes that Labour will adopt her ideas, even in the Labour Party her views are extreme.
She could be acting as an insurance policy for Gordon Brown- letting Labour MPs know that however bad their predicament is now it could be worsened still further if she were to succeed him. I doubt she is that selfless though.
I think she is positioning herself to remain as a key player in the Labour Party after the election. As I say her views aren't mainstream even within Labour but there is enough of a grouping of hard core 'wimmin' on the left that someone establishing herself as their champion is going to have to be incorporated in the leadership after the election.
PS. I'm probably preaching to the converted here but it is a point worth repeating anyway, when different groups of people are represented in different proportions in something it doesn't prove that there is some insidious form of discrimination going on.
The fact that there are fewer female politicians than male ones doesn't mean that women are being kept out- those claiming that it does demonstrate something is wrong ususally make no effort to discover whether the proportion of men and women interested in politics is the same or whether the willingness to make the necessary sacrifices for a political career is the same.
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