What They Are Saying: JD Vance “Alienates Every Woman Voter in Ohio” With “Disgusting” Views on Divorce

After making news for his extreme and out of touch views on abortion and sexual assault, JD Vance is earning widespread condemnation for his dangerous and disturbing belief that people should stay in violent marriages for the sake of their children. 

VICE News reported Monday that in 2021, JD Vance argued Americans would be better off if they stayed in unhappy and “even violent” marriages. 


From VICE News:

  • JD Vance said people need to be more willing to stay in unhappy marriages for the sake of their kids—and seemed to suggest that in some cases, “even violent” marriages should continue.
  • The Ohio Republican Senate nominee, talking to Pacifica Christian High School in Southern California last September, gave an extended answer that claimed that people now “shift spouses like they change their underwear,” and that it had done long-term damage to a generation of children.
  • “This is one of the great tricks that I think the sexual revolution pulled on the American populace, which is the idea that like, ‘well, OK, these marriages were fundamentally, you know, they were maybe even violent, but certainly they were unhappy. And so getting rid of them and making it easier for people to shift spouses like they change their underwear, that’s going to make people happier in the long term,’” Vance said.
  • “And maybe it worked out for the moms and dads, though I’m skeptical. But it really didn’t work out for the kids of those marriages,” Vance continued. “And that’s what I think all of us should be honest about, is we’ve run this experiment in real time. And what we have is a lot of very, very real family dysfunction that’s making our kids unhappy.”

Vance’s comments quickly went viral, earning scathing coverage and swift condemnation from across the country. Here’s what they’re saying about Vance arguing that women should stay in violent marriages: 

  • Vanity Fair: “Ohio U.S. Senate candidate J.D. Vance’s views on women have been unambiguous for some time now—he’s previously called rape ‘inconvenient’ and said abortion is as morally reprehensible as slavery—but just in case anyone wasn’t fully aware of his stance, a recently unearthed clip featuring the venture capitalist makes it unequivocal…, if Vance’s advice for married couples were taken, it would no doubt hurt women the most, as they are disproportionately affected by domestic violence.”
  • Ohio Statehouse News Bureau: “Vance is also coming under fire from Democrats for statements he’s made about divorce. This comes after Vice reported Vance said in a speech that Americans would be better off staying in unhappy and ‘even violent’ marriages. Vance has not returned calls for comment. In fact, Vance isn’t speaking out in public forums in Ohio much these days.”
  • The Independent: “JD Vance, the Republican senate nominee from Ohio being backed by former president Donald Trump, has allegedly said that people should continue to stay in marriages — including the ones that are ‘violent’ — for the sake of children.”
  • HuffPost: “Eye-popping takes like this have become part of the Vance brand since he started campaigning for office. In a 2021 interview with a Catholic magazine, the Senate hopeful suggested banning pornography to save marriages. Vanity Fair noted that he’s previously called rape “inconvenient” and said that abortion is as morally reprehensible as slavery. Research has shown that children who witness or are around domestic violence experience negative physical and mental effects.”
  • People Magazine: “Hillbilly Elegy author J.D. Vance, who’s running for Senate in Ohio, defended comments he made about people who ‘shift spouses like they change their underwear’ to leave unhappy or ‘even violent’ marriages.”
  • Salon: “J.D. Vance, the Ohio Republican Party’s nominee for the United States Senate, cast doubt last year about whether it was ever right for people to seek a divorce, even if their marriage was marred by violence…He claimed that allowing people to obtain easy divorces had harmed generations of American children.”
  • Newsweek: “Vance lashed out at people who ‘shift spouses like they change their underwear’ during a talk at Pacifica Christian High School in Newport Beach, California, last September…Regardless of Vance’s response, the reactions to his original remarks were largely negative on Twitter, where many, including his Democratic Senate election opponent Representative Tim Ryan, accused him of wrongly promoting the continuation of abusive marriages for the supposed benefit of children.”
  • WVXU’s Howard Wilkinson: “I suppose the campaign strategy for Vance here is to alienate every woman voter in Ohio. Good luck with that, JD.”
  • University of Akron Professor Amanda Weinstein: “Leaving a violent marriage didn’t work out for the kids?!? Kids living with domestic violence are at risk physically, psychologically, & emotionally – they may have depression, anxiety, aggressive behavior, decreased social ability, learning problems …”
  • MSNBC’s Nicolle Wallace: “Every Republican should answer for one of their own advocating for women staying in violent relationships.”