Jimmy Choo founder wades into politics and pushes equal pay

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As women continue to take the political spotlight in fighting to close the gender wage gap, Tamara Mellon, co-founder of the Jimmy Choo luxury shoe line, is offering up her own practical advice for those in the workforce who have faced pay inequalities: Be ready to fight for yourself.

“One of the mistakes that I probably made, and what I’m trying to do with this new brand, is teach women to speak up,” Mellon said on the Women Rule podcast.

Mellon, now the founder and chief creative officer of her own eponymous shoe line, said she became an advocate for closing the gender wage gap after her own experiences running Jimmy Choo.

The designer’s moves to advocate for equal pay comes just as women nationwide are making larger pushes for representation in their statehouses and in Congress. Continue reading “Jimmy Choo founder wades into politics and pushes equal pay”

Beto-mania gets serious

The odds are against O’Rourke. But the crowds love him. Will any of that matter in November?

‘We literally show up with our binder full of women’

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Where are all the black women on Capitol Hill?

It’s the question that motivated Rhonda Foxx to form the Black Women’s Congressional Alliance, a coalition of minority staffers from across the political spectrum, and address what she saw as a dire lack of diversity in her workplace.

“We just had the realization that we are underrepresented,” Foxx, chief of staff to Rep. Alma Adams (D-N.C.), said on the latest episode of the Women Rule podcast.

Foxx and Meaghan Lynch, communications director for Rep. G.K. Butterfield (D-S.C.), founded the BWCA in January to much fanfare.

Lynch recalled the group’s first informal gathering that month.

“Maybe 150 women showed up,” she said. “We didn’t have speeches or remarks or anything. Everyone just showed up and just talked amongst each other. People didn’t want to Continue reading “‘We literally show up with our binder full of women’”

Napolitano on family separations: ‘I don’t know how this could be justified either legally or morally’

Former Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano is calling President Donald Trump’s recent policies of separating migrant families at the border “cruel” and a “misallocation” of resources by the administration.

In the latest episode of the Women Rule podcast, Napolitano implied that the White House’s “zero-tolerance” policy along the southern border could even be against the law.

“I don’t know how this could be justified either legally or morally,” said Napolitano, who led the Department of Homeland Security from 2009 to 2013 during the Obama administration. “The notion that you’re going to somehow create a deterrent to illegal immigration through this kind of policy – we’ve seen this before and it just doesn’t work. And it’s cruel.”

What’s more, according to Napolitano, the decision to prosecute illegal border crossers as criminals – rather than in civil deportation proceedings – is a waste of limited federal resources.

“They’re going to Continue reading “Napolitano on family separations: ‘I don’t know how this could be justified either legally or morally’”

Napolitano on family separations: ‘I don’t know how this could be justified either legally or morally’

Former Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano is calling President Donald Trump’s recent policies of separating migrant families at the border “cruel” and a “misallocation” of resources by the administration.

In the latest episode of the Women Rule podcast, Napolitano implied that the White House’s “zero-tolerance” policy along the southern border could even be against the law.

“I don’t know how this could be justified either legally or morally,” said Napolitano, who led the Department of Homeland Security from 2009 to 2013 during the Obama administration. “The notion that you’re going to somehow create a deterrent to illegal immigration through this kind of policy – we’ve seen this before and it just doesn’t work. And it’s cruel.”

What’s more, according to Napolitano, the decision to prosecute illegal border crossers as criminals – rather than in civil deportation proceedings – is a waste of limited federal resources.

“They’re going to Continue reading “Napolitano on family separations: ‘I don’t know how this could be justified either legally or morally’”

‘Tell everybody’: Alisyn Camerota’s advice for women dealing with sexual harassment

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In the #MeToo era, Alisyn Camerota, a former Fox News anchor, says her advice for women who are being sexually harassed has drastically evolved.

“The sands have shifted beneath our feet, and so it’s a whole new ballgame, new rules,” Camerota said in the latest episode of POLITICO’s Women Rule podcast. “So the new rules for young women making their way in this business or all businesses is: You don’t have to take it.”

“Tell someone. Go to HR,” she said. “If for whatever reason you don’t get satisfaction there, tell everybody. Tell everybody that you can. Tell the person who is doing it: ‘That’s not cool. That makes me uncomfortable. Don’t do that again.’”

Camerota – now a co-anchor on CNN’s “New Day” program and the author of a new novel, “Amanda Wakes Up”—admits Continue reading “‘Tell everybody’: Alisyn Camerota’s advice for women dealing with sexual harassment”

The politics of Christina Tosi

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As prominent figures in Washington’s dining scene get political, Christina Tosi is putting politics aside, even as the Milk Bar chef and owner expands further into the heart of the nation’s capital.

With a new location opening in Washington this week, Tosi emphasized in a recent Women Rule podcast episode that the dessert shop is a “place of inclusion” – whatever your political views.

“Starting Milk Bar – it’s food for the people. It’s baked goods for the people,” Tosi said on the podcast, which was taped at the South by Southwest festival in March. “I was raised by a family that was like, ‘You don’t talk about money at the table, and you don’t talk about politics at the table.’”

Tosi added the caveat that her public apolitical position isn’t “because I don’t have my Continue reading “The politics of Christina Tosi”

‘You’re so beautiful. Men must not know what to do with you.’

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Sally Kohn, a liberal political pundit who previously worked as a Fox News commentator, has opened up about the sexual harassment she faced at the hands of Roger Ailes, the former chairman and CEO of the network.

In a new Women Rule podcast interview with POLITICO, Kohn related two instances in Ailes’ office when she met with him – once before she worked for the network and another just before she left Fox.

“I go into Roger’s office and he tells me I have pretty eyes,” Kohn said. “Five times in like five minutes.”

“Let’s be honest – I think I got off easy, right?” Kohn added of that interaction.

Just before she stopped working at Fox News, Kohn said, she had a final meeting with Ailes, who died last May at age 77.

“He Continue reading “‘You’re so beautiful. Men must not know what to do with you.’”

Universal Standard fights the size wage gap for women

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As women grapple with workforce equality issues like the gender pay gap, one company says there’s another battle to wage: the size pay gap.

Polina Veksler and Alex Waldman – the founders of Universal Standard, the plus-size clothing brand with big-name investors like Gwyneth Paltrow and Blake Mycoskie, the founder of Toms Shoes – told the Women Rule podcast that it’s a fight worth having.

“We really believe that it’s time to stop othering women by size,” Waldman said at a recent live taping of the podcast.

And according to Veksler, the two founders “absolutely see ourselves as having a role” in the wage-gap fight.

While the national conversation around gender equality has focused significantly on how women’s wages compare with those of their male colleagues, recent studies have also brought attention to the plight of heavier Continue reading “Universal Standard fights the size wage gap for women”

S’well founder gives thumbs-up to business leaders diving into politics

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As businesses large and small wrestle with their role in a politically divisive climate, one CEO is applauding executives who wade into the political arena.

“When I see CEOs and leaders getting involved, I do appreciate it,” Sarah Kauss, the founder of the S’well water bottle company, said on the latest episode of the Women Rule podcast. “It’s a bit of a hard issue, and some people would rather say, you know, ‘Stick to your business,’ but I think we have a platform and we have a voice.”

“If we think that there is a chance that we can positively affect the world by saying something and standing up,” she added, “I am all about either those individuals or those companies that are willing to put themselves out there to make the world a better place. Continue reading “S’well founder gives thumbs-up to business leaders diving into politics”

‘News has a stigma’: One media company’s path around the old guard

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As journalism’s old guard grapples with questions of fake news and partisan bias, one media outlet is ditching it all, with the recognition that in the current moment “news has a stigma.” Now the company, theSkimm, is trying to flip that stigma on its head.

“We saw, you know, for the millions of people that are out there that don’t work in D.C. or don’t necessarily live in New York or aren’t on the coast, how do we create something that provides information every single day in a way that they trust and in a way that is conversational?” Danielle Weisberg, a co-founder of theSkimm, said on the most recent episode of the Women Rule podcast.

Weisberg, along with co-executive Carly Zakin, founded theSkimm in 2012 as a daily emailed newsletter digest of current Continue reading “‘News has a stigma’: One media company’s path around the old guard”

Kara Swisher: In Silicon Valley, ‘stop juvenilizing men’

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As Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg heads to Congress, one prominent tech reporter has some advice for Capitol Hill and the reporters who cover it: Take off the kid gloves when dealing with the Silicon Valley executive.

“He’s one of the richest people on earth. He’s an adult. He’s 30-some years old,” Kara Swisher, co-founder of Recode, said on the latest episode of the Women Rule podcast. “He can answer questions if he’s the CEO. He founded this company. Stop juvenilizing men here in Silicon Valley.”

When it comes to reporting on Facebook’s continuing controversies over data sharing, Swisher blasted some journalists for being “extraordinarily shy to do their job.”

“They sort of go around, ‘Well, Mark, tell me about — there’s been some issues around privacy,’” she said. “We’ve got to stop acting like these Continue reading “Kara Swisher: In Silicon Valley, ‘stop juvenilizing men’”

‘It must be an extremely stressful environment’: Former Bush Cabinet secretary speaks out on Trump

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On the heels of President Donald Trump’s abrupt Cabinet firings and public rebukes of his secretaries, Margaret Spellings — President George W. Bush’s education secretary from 2005 to 2009 — spoke out about the “extremely stressful” environment in Washington.

“It’s hard. It’s really hard,” Spellings said on the latest episode of the Women Rule podcast. “It speaks to — you have to have a leader who reaches his or her hand across the aisle and makes that the expectation.”

Asked whether she believes Trump is making that effort, Spellings, now the president of the University of North Carolina system, responded: “Well, I would just say that I think my boss — I think his predecessors maybe showed some good examples of how you could do that.”

“It must be an extremely stressful environment to try Continue reading “‘It must be an extremely stressful environment’: Former Bush Cabinet secretary speaks out on Trump”

‘It must be an extremely stressful environment’: Former Bush Cabinet secretary speaks out on Trump

Subscribe to Women Rule on Apple Podcasts here. | Subscribe via Stitcher here.

On the heels of President Donald Trump’s abrupt Cabinet firings and public rebukes of his secretaries, Margaret Spellings — President George W. Bush’s education secretary from 2005 to 2009 — spoke out about the “extremely stressful” environment in Washington.

“It’s hard. It’s really hard,” Spellings said on the latest episode of the Women Rule podcast. “It speaks to — you have to have a leader who reaches his or her hand across the aisle and makes that the expectation.”

Asked whether she believes Trump is making that effort, Spellings, now the president of the University of North Carolina system, responded: “Well, I would just say that I think my boss — I think his predecessors maybe showed some good examples of how you could do that.”

“It must be an extremely stressful environment to try Continue reading “‘It must be an extremely stressful environment’: Former Bush Cabinet secretary speaks out on Trump”

Heitkamp: People don’t fully appreciate Second Amendment

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LOS ANGELES — Just days after an emotional, nationwide demonstration demanding stricter gun control laws, Sen. Heidi Heitkamp (D-N.D.) has launched a staunch defense of the Second Amendment and pushed back on calls for reforms.

“I think sometimes people have a diminished sense of the Second Amendment,” Heitkamp told her audience this week during a Women Rule podcast taping in Los Angeles.

She acknowledged the political climate in California, noting that her views “might make everybody kind of groan who sees the tragedy that’s happened in this country, as it relates to gun violence.” The audience visibly tensed as Heitkamp continued to push her perspective, at some points audibly questioning her reasoning.

But the senator explained that she has “a real kind of visceral reaction to the lack of appreciation — or understanding — Continue reading “Heitkamp: People don’t fully appreciate Second Amendment”

The woman behind the RNC’s fundraising juggernaut

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Ronna Romney McDaniel is smashing fundraising records for the Republican National Committee.

In February, the RNC chairwoman raised $12.8 million for the party – cranking up the total haul for the midterm cycle[RL1] to $157.7 million. The total cash-on-hand number for the RNC: $42.2 million. (Heading into the last midterm elections, in 2014, the RNC had just $10 million cash on hand.) McDaniel has already raised more money than any other chair in any party at this point in the cycle, according to her staff.

In the latest episode of POLITICO’s Women Rule podcast, the RNC chairwoman opened up about her fervor for bringing in cash. “I just love the challenge. I think it is the most amazing thing,” she told POLITICO’s Anna Palmer. “I do love going into a meeting and Continue reading “The woman behind the RNC’s fundraising juggernaut”

Heritage president: Omarosa blocked me from Trump White House

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Heritage Foundation President Kay Coles James says she was “blocked” from serving in President Donald Trump’s administration by Omarosa Manigault Newman, the former White House aide and reality television star.

“It was Omarosa,” James said in an interview with POLITICO’s Women Rule podcast, discussing how she has not managed to land a job in the administration despite her conservative bona fides.

“The way it was described to me is she approached the whole thing like it was ‘The Apprentice,‘” James added. “So she looked around Washington and said, ‘OK, who do I need to get rid of first?’”

Manigault Newman, a former “Apprentice” star and vocal Trump surrogate in 2016, was the highest-ranking African-American adviser in the White House, serving as director of communications for the Office of Public Liaison. She announced her resignation from the Continue reading “Heritage president: Omarosa blocked me from Trump White House”

Franken’s replacement tries to turn the page

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Sen. Tina Smith doesn’t want to talk about Al Franken.

When asked about her Democratic predecessor, who resigned the Minnesota seat amid allegations of sexual misconduct, she avoided even saying his name in a recent interview with POLITICO’s Women Rule podcast, instead concentrating on the economic implications of the #MeToo movement.

“I believe it’s a cultural change that we’re going through as a country, and it’s not really a partisan issue,” Smith, Minnesota’s former lieutenant governor, told POLITICO. “But I think that my party, the Democratic Party, needs to continue to lead the way in … paving the path for more economic opportunity for women. And to me, this is really part of that challenge, whether it is paid family leave, whether it is improved child care.”

Franken’s checkered history on sexual harassment is an issue Continue reading “Franken’s replacement tries to turn the page”

Anna Deavere Smith: Washington must play ‘big part’ in criminal justice reform

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Actress and playwright Anna Deavere Smith has a new film focusing on incarceration among American youth – and in the latest Women Rule podcast, she’s calling on everyone in the nation’s capital to get involved.

“Washington has a big, big part to play in this,” said Deavere Smith, who appeared on the hit TV drama “The West Wing.” “Not just the government but all of those buildings and institutes where policy is made.”

Her HBO film “Notes From the Field,” out this week, is based on more than 200 interviews with teachers, former inmates, protesters and politicians whose lives have been touched by the so-called school-to-prison pipeline, which disproportionally affects poor, minority youth.

The film, adapted from her critically acclaimed one-woman play, shows Deavere Smith transforming into more than a dozen people, including congressman Continue reading “Anna Deavere Smith: Washington must play ‘big part’ in criminal justice reform”

Duckworth: ‘I can’t technically take maternity leave’

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Sen. Tammy Duckworth has a problem: How can a senator who needs to vote take time off to care for her newborn?

“I can’t technically take maternity leave,” Duckworth said in the latest episode of the Women Rule podcast. “Because if I take maternity leave, then I won’t be allowed to sponsor legislation or vote during that time period.”

The Illinois Democrat and Iraq War veteran, who is expecting her second child this spring, will be the first sitting senator to give birth in office. She plans to take 12 weeks of paid leave – but she’s working with her party’s leadership and her staff to figure out how she can still take important votes while she’s out.

“It’s going to change some Senate rules,” Duckworth said.

The Senate often has members with medical issues who Continue reading “Duckworth: ‘I can’t technically take maternity leave’”