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The Mistress In Governor Bentley Scandal Takes All The Heat

In the misogynist conservative culture, Alabama clearly believes the woman is the temptress who deserves the lion's share of the blame.

The scandal rocking the Montgomery Governor's office has been especially salacious because Governor Robert Bentley was elected as the family values candidate. His affair with a so-called 'employee' has caused her to resign her position while he is steadfast in his decision NOT to resign.: clearly demonstrating that conservatives always deem the woman the temptress or the vixen. It is always, always HER fault for a man's weakness.

The mistress in this case, Rebekah Caldwell Mason is the one who has resigned in disgrace for the affair. Once the recordings surfaced of sexually explicit conversations, she tendered her resignation as Bentley's senior political adviser. But how was she paid exactly for her position?

Mason is not paid with state funds. How she is paid, though, flies in the face of Bentley's former transparency. She is partially paid with campaign funds, and with money passed through a shadowy 501(c)(4) that is designed to obscure the source.

It's important to know how she was paid, and it's definitely a cause for concern. What's more concerning, I believe, is the assignation of blame for the affair. It seems to be her fault, and she should suffer far greater consequences.

According to, the governor is no longer the man they knew in 2010 because of HER. The title alone says it all: How Rebekah Caldwell Mason changed Gov. Robert Bentley insinuates that this man would have been just fine if she hadn't come into the picture. Here's how they depict the governor's change.

This is not the man I used to know.

Not in dress or demeanor, in policy or in perception. The man who in 2010 became governor as a trusted grandfather and aw shucks country doctor has lost the network of friends and backers that put him into office. He has lost his family and his hometown allies, his reputation, and the trust of his state. He left his home church, lost his moral authority and – many say – his way.

Those closest to him say those losses started with one event: the rise of the influence of his senior political adviser and telephone paramour Rebekah Caldwell Mason.

He is not going to give up his job, but she should suffer eternally for this sin. His dalliances are more forgivable than her sins.

Even for a conservative, this is an astounding double standard. She has to lose her job and do the penance lap, while he gets to keep his job and play the victim here. Meanwhile, there is no sign that Bentley intends to lay off his policies aimed at punishing women for having sex in his state or to back a form of sex education that acknowledges that sex for pleasure is a normal, acceptable behavior. The “fun is for me, consequences are for everyone else” mentality on display couldn’t be more stark.

The religious conservative has always held on to misogynist views because women must be dominated by men and their wiles are more dangerous because they are inherently seductive and suspicious beings. The sexual hypocrisy on the right will continue to flourish.

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