- The Washington Times - Friday, July 14, 2017

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

Nancy Pelosi used to be the House speaker — and this is the point to keep in mind while reading her tweet about Paul Ryan and congressional dress codes.

“Glad to see @Speaker Ryan is updating the dress code for the House floor,” the California Democrat tweeted. “These unwritten rules are in desperate need of updates.”

Umm … then how come Pelosi didn’t enact these updates during her years and years as House leader?

Let’s just circle back a bit to get the full context.

A few days ago, a female reporter was booted from the Speakers’ Lobby because she was wearing a sleeveless dress, in violation of House dress codes requiring “appropriate business attire.” The code doesn’t go into detail about what that means, but it’s generally been taken to mean no bare arms, no open-toe shoes — your basic Miss Manners business etiquette and dress advice.

The female reporter tried to stuff the cloth on her shoulder with paper, a la makeshift arm coverings. But she was still told to leave, according to CBS News.

The media quickly howled “sexist,” and Ryan took the brunt of the criticisms. Ryan, in response, has announced a change in dress code is coming.

But the point is this: These guidelines have been in place for years — and years. Unspoken, yes. But still there. As a matter of fact, they were in place when Pelosi held the speaker role — when she was in a perfect position to address the matter and clarify, say, sleeveless and toeless were A-OK fashions for her lobby. But did she? Nope.

She waited until Ryan was in charge and then came forward with her “whew, what a relief” remark on Twitter about the looming dress code change, as if issuing praise.

What a cheap partisan point — low political punch. And it’s wildly hypocritical.

Fact is, if Pelosi had been all that concerned about bare women’s arms and the toeless shoe crowd, she would’ve made a deal out of it while leader of the House. 

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