On the verge of possibly electing our first female president, 2015 had the potential to be a huge year for gender equality in American politics. And while the candidates have (for the most part) steered clear of taking shots at Democrat Hillary Clinton and Republican Carly Fiorina using the expected coded language for why they think a woman might not make the best commander-in-chief, that didn't stop some of the contenders from floating some seriously sexist trash talk.
After surveying the presidential field for 2015 specific comments, the most egregious speech fell on the right. Here are 11 of the worst things said this year:
The Time Donald Trump Blamed Tough Questions On A Woman's PeriodROBYN BECK AFP
After being pressed by moderator Megyn Kelly during the first Republican presidential debate, former “Apprentice” star Donald Trump complained that she was being hostile toward him because she "had blood coming out of her eyes, blood coming out of her… wherever." The Internet responded with tons of women live-tweeting their periods at the Donald, who later claimed only someone with a "very sick mind" would ever think he was talking about period blood. Riiiiight.
The Time Rick Santorum Said We Should Really Be Focusing On Man Problems
Rick Santorum had a confounding answer to a question from 17-year-old Lizzy Dowd when she asked him about his stance on equal pay for women. The former Penn. Senator said he's concerned about the fact that more women are attending college than men and that they have higher graduation rates than their male peers.
"If there's a huge problem in America today it is that we are losing a generation of young men," he said, seemingly forgetting that women are still not as likely to earn as much as men when they do graduate.
The Time Ben Carson Compared Abortion To Slavery
The soft-spoken physician, who briefly rocketed to the top of the Republican field, made necks snap in October when he explained his view on women's role in reproductive decisions by making an analogy to slavery. "During slavery," he said in a "Meet the Press" interview, "a lot of the slave owners thought that they had the right to do whatever they wanted to that slave. Anything that they chose to do. And, you know, what if the abolitionist had said, you know, 'I don’t believe in slavery. I think it’s wrong. But you guys do whatever you want to do?' Where would we be?"
The Time Rand Paul Trolled Hillary With A Fake Pinterest Page
Before he announced his candidacy Kentucky Sen. Paul tweeted out a link to a fake, blatantly sexist Pinterest board for Clinton, with mocking pictures of the "power couple," an "inspirational quotes" page and a jokey "White House remodel" page imagining how Hil would give the Oval Office a makeover. The groaner was not described anywhere as a parody and Pinterest took it down because it violated their Acceptable Use policy.
The Time Trump Made Fun Of Carly Fiorina's Face In A Rolling Stone Cover Story
Trump has spent a good portion of his White House run saying outrageous things, but he took it to a new level in a Rolling Stone feature in which he bashed former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina by saying, "look at that face! ... Would anyone vote for that? Can you imagine that, the face of our next president?"
He later denied he was making a lookist remark and said Fiorina's got "a beautiful face and I think she's a beautiful woman" during the second debate. Fiorina hit back elegantly at the following debate when asked to respond to the comment, saying, "I think women all over this country heard what Mr. Trump said."
The Time Marco Rubio Didn't Understand How DNA Works When Explaining His Pro-Life StanceJustin Sullivan Getty Images News
Florida Sen. Marco Rubio got into hot water in August when he made a wrong-headed quip to explain his belief that life begins at conception. Regarding a fertilized egg, he said, "It cannot turn into an animal. It can't turn into a donkey. ... If they can't say it will be human life, what does it become, then. Could it become a cat?"
The Time Jeb Bush Slammed Funding For Women's Health
Among the multiple gaffes in Jeb Bush's campaign was the August 4 corker where he claimed he wasn't sure "we need half a billion dollars for women's health issues."
That remark, during a speech where Bush called for defunding Planned Parenthood, was quickly followed by a clarification in which Bush claimed he "misspoke" as there are "countless community health centers, rural clinics and other women's health organizations that need to be fully funded." His original intent was to say he didn't want the $500 million in federal funding for PP, but the way he said it made it seem like he was against funding a a broader range of health care for women.
The Time Ted Cruz Thought Birth Control Comes From Soda Machines
"Last I checked, we don’t have a rubber shortage in America," the Texas Sen. said on Nov. 30 at an Iowa town hall meeting, before explaining how back in his college days all you had to do was walk up to a vending machine, slip in two quarters and "Jiminy Cricket!" you got yourself some birth control. Sorry, Sen., it's not that easy.
The Time Mike Huckabee Voted For His Wife For The $10 Bill Because... The Ladies Love The Shopping
When the GOP candidates were asked who they would put on a $10 bill during a debate in September, former Ark. Gov. Huckabee had an answer that made the others seem almost feminist by comparison. "That's an easy one," he said. "I'd put my wife on there I've been married to her 41 years. ... I mean, who else could possibly be on that money other than my wife. And then that way, she could spend her own money with her face."
The Time Dr. Carson Said The War (On Women) Is Over
"They tell you that there’s a war on women," the retired pediatric neurosurgeon told a Little Rock, Arkansas, crowd in August. "There is no war on women. There may be a war on what’s inside of women, but there is no war on women in this country."
This in a year when almost 400 anti-abortion bills have been introduced around the country.
The Time Donald Trump Bashed A Supermodel's Looks, Just Because
In one of the saddest, most misogynistic episodes in a very testosterone-driven campaign, Trump -- who at one point suggested his daughter Ivanka was so hot he'd date her if, you know, they weren't related -- took a potshot at supermodel Heidi Klum, saying, "Heidi Klum. Sadly, she's not longer a 10." Klum clapped back in the best say possible (see above).