Angry female lawmakers in Missouri went head to head after one of them proposed a “ridiculous” and “sexist” new dress code for women – banning bare arms and wearing blazers in the chamber.
The original dress code for women in the home was a dress, skirt or trousers worn with a sweater or blazer and appropriate shoes or boots.
But now Ann Kelley, a Missouri congressman and Republican lawmaker, has proposed a dress code change that would require jackets — defined as blazers or knitted blazer-sweaters — to be worn over the arms.
She said the update was necessary because “it’s important to always maintain a formal and professional atmosphere,” but she was met with outrage during Wednesday’s House of Representatives chamber session – and can be seen shirt-off in video of the debate .
In video from the chamber, Democratic MP Ashley Aune told Kelley: “You know how it feels when a bunch of men in this room are trying to decide whether it’s appropriate or not?”
Kelley countered, “You would think … you would think … you would think that all you had to do was say dress professionally and women could handle it.”
Ann Kelley, a Missouri Representative and Republican Legislature, proposed a dress code change, stating that the update was necessary because “it’s important to always maintain a formal and professional atmosphere.”
Democratic MP Raychel Proudie also stood and spoke about the new rules.
“There are very serious things in this set of rules that I think we should discuss, but instead we are fighting – once again – for women’s right to choose, and in this time it’s how she covers herself and the Interpretation by someone who has no background in fashion.
“Again, this is not a shot, it’s inappropriate to wear sequins before 5 p.m., which tells me I can’t wear a crisp, good St. John sweater if it has too many buttons.
“I spent $1,200 on a suit and I can’t wear it to People’s House because someone who doesn’t have the right selection tells me it’s inappropriate,” she said.
Rep. Peter Meredith spoke about the new dress code and some of the drama that unfolded during Wednesday’s session in the House of Representatives chamber.
“Yes, the caucus, having lost the proposal to wear masks during a pandemic to respect the safety of others, is now spending its time focusing on the fine details of what women need to wear (specifically, how to covered her arms). to show respect here.’
Kelley’s modified version of the proposal was eventually approved by the State House, allowing women to wear both cardigans and jackets, but still not requiring bare arms.
Viewers on Twitter reacted to the heated debate, with many siding with MPs Proudie and Aune – and some commenting on how Kelley himself was presented.
Rep. Peter Meredith tweeted his reaction to the dress code announced in the House of Representatives chamber
The Democrat, who represents St. Louis City, was elected to his first two-year term in November 2016
“She doesn’t even tuck her shirt in! Talk about professionalism!,’ Justin Long’s Walrus Suit tweeted:
Mia Nill tweeted: “THIS lady has the last buzz word? Normally I don’t care: BUT since she’s about ‘professionalism’, why is the shirt unbuttoned and the jacket buttoned?
‘What about THIS blue/black/’business blah’ olive/brown? Jacket combo? (This coat lives in her office and she wears it every day, right?)
The tightening of the dress code was announced on Wednesday during the new session, a standard protocol at the start of the new General Assembly, when members discuss changes to the House Rules every two years.
“Men have to wear a jacket, shirt and tie, right? If they walked in here without a tie, they’d be knocked out in no time,’ Kelley said.
“If they walked in without a jacket, they would be knocked out in no time. So we are very interested in being equal.”
Kelley spoke about the dress code change in a Facebook statement on Thursday Rule 98 – A House rule on how members should dress in the House chamber and on the floor during the session.
“I’ve received a lot of hateful calls, emails and messages regarding this change which is funny because we already have a dress code, all I did was fix the errors and clarify the rule,” she said.
“Every company is responsible for its protocols and rules. When hosting a meeting, certain rules must be followed. Before the house can start its work, rules must be passed. This is something the Chief Clerk of Propriety has requested for many years to be recorded in our rules. Now it has been fixed.
“Every time a bill is presented, everyone has an opportunity to add an amendment, and then that amendment is voted on by the whole panel. Over 15 changes were submitted and fewer than five made it into the rules pack, one of which was mine.
“I spoke less than 5 minutes to table my amendment, so time, I didn’t waste anyone’s time. Spending five minutes trying to fix a grammatical error in MO’s House of Representatives rule book is not a waste of time in my opinion.’
Members of the Missouri House Committee (pictured)
Representative Brenda Shields was one of the members defending Kelley’s proposal, Fox News reported.
Shields indicated that Kelley was clarifying the rules that were already in place and suggested changing the language so that cardigans count as jackets.
Still, the move has been criticized as sexist, as the dress code for men in the chambers – men must wear “business attire, including a coat, tie, dress trousers and dress shoes or boots” – remained unchanged.
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-11635279/Missouri-House-members-face-ridiculous-sexist-new-dress-code-women-proposed.html?ns_mchannel=rss&ns_campaign=1490&ito=1490 Members of the Missouri House face off after a “ridiculous” and “sexist” new dress code for women was proposed