Last year, the national elections brought out the ugly, with right-wing candidates referring to "legitimate rape" and calling pregnancy from rape a "gift of God." The good news is that many of those extremists lost their bids in November, more women than ever are now serving in the House and Senate, and the White House remains in the hands of a pro-choice president, Barack Obama.
But that doesn't mean our reproductive rights are safe. Extremists like Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal have called on conservatives to continue pressing their harsh anti-woman agenda while softening their rhetoric about it. But women are not fooled.
Now is not the time to let our guard down: in the past 6 months, conservatives have pushed anti-abortion legislation in states like Arkansas, which passed a "fetal heartbeat" bill banning abortion at 12 weeks gestation, and North Dakota, which went even further, outlawing abortion at just six weeks — the harshest ban in the nation and clearly a violation of Roe v. Wade.
That's in addition to the 92 anti-abortion provisions in 2011 and 43 in 2012! Bottom line: the fight is now at the state level and we must mobilize immediately before we lose any more ground.
Please help us kick off our “We're Not Fooled!” campaign by making a donation today. We have a goal of raising $100,000 in the next month so that we can fight back state by state to protect women’s rights and lives. With anti-choice extremists controlling the House of Representatives and the U.S. Supreme Court eroding the constitutionality of Roe v. Wade, we can't rely on the federal government to defend reproductive justice from assaults at the state level.
Our first battles will be in New Jersey and Virginia. In New Jersey, Governor Chris Christie is seeking reelection after eliminating state family planning funding for three years in a row — severely reducing New Jersey women's access to vital healthcare. And in Virginia, Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli — who is still proud of the mandatory transvaginal ultrasound bill he championed last year — hopes to bring his brand of extremism to the governor's mansion.
NOW is rolling out a plan to let voters know what's at stake for women in these crucial state elections, and I need your help to make it a huge success. Our goal right now is to raise $100,000 by June 30. Please help us get there, and show right-wing politicians that women voters aren't so easily fooled!
With your generous support, we will put NOW field organizers in key media markets in Virginia and New Jersey, getting the message out about the issues that matter most to women and mobilizing women to vote in larger numbers than ever before. I'm counting on you. Please give as much as you can afford today.
||For women’s lives,
Terry O'Neill, President
National Organization for Women