RuPaul, the host of the now-Emmy-nominated RuPaul’s Drag Race, apparently has a few thoughts about the presidential election. And they amount to one of the strongest — certainly one of the most colorful — endorsements of Hillary Clinton so far this year.
Asked about his feelings on Democrats and Hillary Clinton by E. Alex Jung at Vulture, RuPaul replied:
I fucking love them. I have always loved them. And let me just say this: If you're a politician — not just in Washington but in business and industry, you have to be a politician — there are a lot of things that you have to do that you're not proud of. There are a lot of compromises you have to make because it means that you can get this other thing over here. And if you think that you can go to fucking Washington and be rainbows and butterflies the whole time, you're living in a fucking fantasy world. So now, having said that, think about what a female has to do with that: All of those compromises, all of that shit, double it by ten. And you get to understand who this woman is and how powerful, persuasive, brilliant, and resilient she is. Any female executive, anybody who has been put to the side — women, blacks, gays — for them to succeed in a white-male-dominated culture is an act of brilliance. Of resilience, of grit, of everything you can imagine. So, what do I think of Hillary? I think she's fucking awesome. Is she in bed with Wall Street? Goddammit, I should hope so! You've got to dance with the devil. So which of the horrible people do you want? That's more of the question. Do you want a pompous braggart who doesn't know anything about diplomacy? Or do you want a badass bitch who knows how to get shit done? That's really the question.
There is a lot going on in the answer. But one of the most insightful observations that RuPaul made here, to me, is the enormous burden we place on women in politics. Yes, every politician has to compromise at some point — that’s what happens when you’re trying to balance the opinions of a lot of constituents from all sorts of backgrounds.
But women have to go further — if they do too much to stand out, they’ll suddenly be criticized as radicals, or told their voices are “shrill,” or that they’re “shouting,” or that their clothes are weird and ugly. And the skills they do have — like Clinton’s apparent ability to make people feel heard — are often deemphasized on the campaign trail.
Women don’t just have to balance the typical expectations of politicians. They have to balance the other bullshit that comes with a political system built by and for men.
Given that, the fact Hillary Clinton has survived in politics for decades — and is now way ahead in the polls against Donald Trump — is remarkable. And RuPaul, if his statement is any indication, really seems to appreciate that.