The old guys dominating Capitol Hill apparently still haven’t grown up, especially when it comes to drooling over attractive women.
New York Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, a Democrat, reveals in her forthcoming book Off the Sidelines: Raise Your Voice, Change the World that several elected officials made sleazy, sexist comments about her weight. One older male colleague told her: “Good thing you’re working out, because you don’t want to get porky!” according People magazine.
New York’s junior senator details a conversation with another colleague, a Congressman, who observed: “You know, Kirsten, you’re even pretty when you’re fat.”
Gillibrand, who succeeded Sen. Hillary Clinton in 2009, told Vogue in 2010 that she lost more than 40 pounds after becoming senator and gained 20 back during her second pregnancy. Observing a strict diet and playing tennis helped her lose the weight she gained, Gillibrand told the magazine.
One day, after she’d shed those pounds, a male senator suddenly grabbed her wrist and warned her: “Don’t lose too much weight now. I like my girls chubby.”
It doesn’t appear that Gillibrand will be naming names in the book—and she’s giving the men a pass, according to People.
“It was all statements that were being made by men who were well into their 60s, 70s or 80s,” she told the magazine. “They had no clue that those are inappropriate things to say to a pregnant woman or a woman who just had a baby or to women in general.”
There’s been several occasions in which elected officials felt compelled to discuss Gillibrand’s appearance and not her politics.
In 2010, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, during a fundraiser for ex-New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, reportedly said, “We in the Senate refer to Sen. Gillibrand as the hottest member,” according to Politico.
Gillibrand previously served in the House of Representatives. In 2009, she was tapped by former New York Gov. David Paterson to succeed Clinton.
Off the Sidelines is slated to be released Sept. 9.