As part of our current Political Q&A series with candidates running in the May 2022 Primary, we require participants to identify as pro-choice along with meeting other criteria. For me choice/body autonomy/reproductive justice are deeply embedded in LGBTQ equality and rights. That is also true in terms of the Supreme Court rationale used in cases that have made significant changes in our community – striking down sodomy laws, marriage equality, expanding the scope of federal authority to protect people based on gender identity, etc.
So I ask this question in the current round:
The threats of ‘religious liberty’ laws and exemptions target both LGBTQ rights and women’s rights. Pennsylvania has no law protecting marriage equality, second-parent adoption, nondiscrimination, or similar important rights. If SCOTUS overturns or waters down Roe v Wade and the ‘penumbra of privacy’ protecting us, what do you anticipate happening in Pennsylvania?
Last night, POLITICO broke the news of a draft memo in the Supreme Court that would overturn Roe, with allusions to Lawrence and Obgerfell. Whatever happens with the SCOTUS decision will have lifelong implications for most of us. Our best defense is an aggressive and informed offense at the ballot box and advocating our elected officials along with a significant investment in the organizations who have been doing this work for decades.
- Whom we send to the Pennsylvania General Assembly this year is so incredibly important – Republicans have a clear majority in both chambers so we need the smartest progressives to navigate a treacherous landscape.
- We need to keep a Democrat in the Governor’s Office (and Lt. Governor)
- On the federal level, we need to flip the Senate seat to the strongest warrior for reproductive justice. And we need to also send similar people to fill the vacant seats in the House of Representatives.
- Perhaps most important, we need a significant turnout in the primary and the general midterm elections.
Make the stakes clear. Make them clear politically and in your personal life. With your family, your friends, your neighbors, your children, and your candidates.
So read these responses to understand the candidates histories with regard to organizing around reproductive justice, their understanding of the Constitutional law implications for this decision, and their vision for reproductive justice in Pennsylvania. Ask the candidates who have not responded to step up and go on the record. If the leaked memo from SCOTUS doesn’t motivate them to connect with voters on these issues in every possible way, then God help us all. And yes, you should check their responses elsewhere as well. This isn’t the only option. It does make a response more robust.
Responses from this election cycle are listed below in the order they were returned by the campaign.
- Q&A With NaTisha Washington, Candidate for PA House District 24
- Q&A With Jerry Dickinson, Candidate for U.S. Congress PA-12
- Q&A with Emily Kinkead, Candidate for PA House District 20
- Q&A with John Fetterman, Candidate for US Senate
- Q&A with La’Tasha Mayes, Candidate for PA House District 24
- Q&A with Jessica Benham, Candidate for PA House District 36
- Q&A with Deja Alvarez, Candidate for PA House District 182
- Q&A with Summer Lee, Candidate for US Congress PA-12
- Q&A with Sean Meloy, Candidate for US Congress PA-17
This candidate has declined to participate
Martell Covington – Candidate for PA House District 24
We have sent Q&A’s to these folks who have agreed to participate. Waiting for them to be returned.
- Malcolm Kenyatta
- Conor Lamb
- Aerion Andrews
- Abigail Salisbury
- Alexandra Hunt
- Zarah Livingston
- Austin Davis
- Lindsey Williams
- Mandy Steele
- Brian Sims
- Robert Vigue
- Arvind Venkat
- Sara Innamorato
- Jonathan Lovitz
I’ve reached out to these folx with no response
- Josh Shapiro
- Steve Irwin
- Will Parker
- Jeff Woodard
- Chris Deluzio
- Glen Grayson
- Nick Mastro
- Randall Taylor
- Brandon Markosek
- Tristan McClelland
- Stephanie Fox
- Rianna Czech
As always, we are willing to customize an email Q&A for any candidate in Pennsylvania who is 1) pro LGBTQ equality, 2) pro-choice, and 3) certifies that Joe Biden won the 2020 Presidential Election. You can reach out to pghlesbian @ gmail to request a Q&A or discuss one in the works.
Like many, I am feeling very anxious and unsettled today. Let’s keep moving forward together.
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