Senator Shelley Moore Capito's Morgantown, WV office was vandalized last weekend, the local WDTV reports. "Fuck Capito, fuck Capital" was spray painted on the side of the building, and has already been removed and reported to the police.
Capito was recently in the national spotlight for joining two other female Republican senators in opposing a plan to repeal the Affordable Care Act without replacement legislation in place. She, along with Sens. Susan Collins and Lisa Murkowski, received sexist tweets and threatening comments from men in Congress afterwards. Capito was then criticized from the other side for voting to open debate on healthcare and voting "yes" on the GOP's Obamacare replacement bill she previously opposed and the party's "skinny repeal" bill (both of which ultimately failed).
The West Virginian senator isn't the only politician to receive threats recently, though.
Kim Weaver, a Democrat challenging Republican Rep. Steve King in Iowa’s Fourth Congressional District, dropped out of the race in June, citing "very alarming acts of intimidation, including death threats" as one reason. She wrote in a Facebook post explaining her decision, "While some may say enduring threats are just a part of running for office, my personal safety has increasingly become a concern."
The local office of Republican Rep. Tim Murphy of Pennsylvania was also vandalized last month. "Filth" was painted in red across the office's wall and the word "rot" was written on a glass door, according to The Pittsburgh-Post Gazette. A group called Mondays With Murphy was holding weekly protests outside the office, but the police didn't believe the graffiti was a product of the protests.
So, this problem isn't exclusive to female politicians, but it seems less than coincidental that Capito received sexist criticisms for her involvement in the Senate's healthcare debate very recently. Not only did another GOP lawmaker say "somebody needs to go over there to that Senate and snatch a knot in their ass" in reference to the women opposing Republican efforts to repeal Obamacare, but people tweeted at Capito and the others, calling them "lying feminazis" and "old hags" that don't belong in the Republican Party.
It's still unknown who vandalized Capito's office — and why — but more than 80% of female politicians worldwide face psychological violence (including threats of violent acts and coercion), and their gender is no coincidence.