The types of books Michigan’s Republican gubernatorial candidate Tudor Dixon wants to ban appear to keep expanding. In recently released audio, Dixon suggested that books about divorce shouldn’t be available to all students in public schools.
This week, the progressive PAC American Bridge 21st Century unearthed the October 2020 clip from Dixon’s time as an anchor on far-right streaming network Real America’s Voice show America’s Voice Live, in which Dixon claimed that a children’s book about divorce caused her daughter anxiety.
“When my daughter was in first grade, she got a book out of the school library, and it was a book on divorce,” Dixon said. “And it was something about having two different homes, and by the end of the book, the little girl had been told, ‘You get to have Christmas at both houses.’”
“My husband and I were trying to figure out how to get her to stop worrying about something that wasn’t going to happen,” Dixon continued. “And I remember he and I both going, ‘Why was this something she was just able to pick up off the shelf?’ Because it caused an unnecessary anxiety in her life.”
“It’s just a perfect example of, we need parents involved. And there are resources that are helpful for a child that’s going through it, and if they’re not going through it, it could cause anxiety.”
Listen for yourself: pic.twitter.com/IKjM4Rw23g
— American Bridge 21st Century (@American_Bridge) October 25, 2022
Dixon has made so-called “parental rights” in public school education a centerpiece of her campaign against incumbent Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D), proposing her “Parents Right to Know Act,” which would ban discussion of “sex and gender theory” in grades K–3, similar to Florida’s “Don’t Say Gay” law. She has also called for banning transgender athletes from participating in school sports.
In this week’s second and final Michigan gubernatorial debate, the Trump-endorsed candidate railed against supposed “pornographic” books in school libraries and has said she would support a statewide ban on “pornographic” books in schools. Republicans nationwide have been characterizing books dealing with LGBTQ themes as pornographic and inappropriate in attempts to ban such books from both public libraries and schools.
In response, Whitmer slammed Dixon and other Republicans’ rhetoric around the issues as divisive.
“Do you really think books are more dangerous than guns? Do you really think that books pose a greater danger to our kids than gun violence does,” Whitmer asked Dixon, who opposes red-flag laws and supports allowing Michiganders to carry concealed weapons without a permit.
Real Clear Politics’ polling average shows Whitmer leading Dixon by 3.2 points.