Bush-Lance Record A Clear Disaster for New Jersey Women
Opposition to Birth Control Access and Pro-Privatization Views Would Continue Bush Assault on Womens Rights
Leonard Lance's campaign today tried to desperately conceal his poor record on important womens issues that simply mirror the Bush Administration's policies that have failed New Jersey women and families for the past eight years. Congressional candidate Linda Stender highlighted why she is by far the best choice to change Washington to help better the lives of women:
"From admitting he was one of only six Senators opposing my bill to secure women's access to birth control to supporting Social Security privatization that will disproportionately harm women who rely exclusively on Social Security for their retirement, it's clear Leonard Lance simply offers more of the same failed Bush policies that have harmed women. The economic crisis has women petrified about their jobs and how they're going to pay the bills and take care of their children."
Lance also voted against New Jersey's paid family leave law to help New Jersey parents balance work and family duties. "I don't know how you can pretend to support women and families and then oppose such important efforts to help improve the lives of so many families suffering with a sick parent or struggling to take care of a newborn baby," said Stender.
If elected, Stender would be the only female member of the New Jersey Congressional delegation and the first female Democrat in nearly 30 years. "I'm proud to have the support of Planned Parenthood Action Fund, who correctly noted that Lance needs to stop calling himself pro-choice' because he opposed my bill to ensure pharmacists fill out women's prescriptions. New Jersey's 4.3 million women deserve representation and I am proud to be their advocate," said Stender.
New Lance Ad Tries to Maintain Pro-choice Facade.
Lance One of Six Senators to Oppose Right of Women to Access Contraception. In 2006, Lance opposed Stender's bill ensuring women have access to prescription drugs, including birth control, at pharmacies. Lance voted against the bill although it passed overwhelmingly through the Senate, 31-6. 11 Republicans voted for Stender's bill. [S1195, Seq. 336, 6/26/06]
DCCC Ad Noted Lance's Vote on S1195 to Oppose Contraception for Women. View the ad here.
Planned Parenthood Action Fund Endorsed Stender, Noting Lance's Anti-Woman Record. Planned Parenthood Action Fund, in their endorsement of Stender, called for Lance to stop calling himself pro-choice as his record shows just the opposite. Planned Parenthood Action Fund noted, "During his seventeen years in the New Jersey Legislature, Senator Lance aligned himself with the anti-choice extremists time and time again. In fact, Senator Lance was one of only six New Jersey Senators to oppose Linda's bill that ensures women are able to get their prescriptions filled at local pharmacies." [NJ Planned Parenthood Action Fund, 9/23/08]
Bush Administration Proposed Law to Limit Access to Contraception and Overrule State Protections. In July 2008, Department of Health and Human Services issued a proposed rule that would require hospitals receiving federal funds to certify that, in their hiring, they do not discriminate against people who refuse to provide forms of contraception, such as birth control pills, due to personal religious beliefs. 104 House members sent a letter to the Bush Administration denouncing the proposal and noting its threat to states such as New Jersey: "By distorting the scope of the laws, it would gut state and local protections of women's right to safe and effective birth control." [ABC News, 7/21/08]
Lance Expressed Support for Bush's Privatization Proposal. In 2005, Lance voted against a Senate resolution calling on the U.S. Congress to reject privatizing Social Security. The act called on Congress to "reject the Social Security privatization proposals of the President's Social Security Commission that would create private accounts, require deep cuts in guaranteed Social Security benefits and lead to excessive federal borrowing." Lance voted against the resolution. [SR94, Seq. 1065, 6/23/05]
Women Depend More on Social Security Than Men. Women make up 60 percent of Social Security beneficiaries, and they depend more heavily on Social Security than men do for their income in retirement. Half of the women aged 65 and older would be poor if not for Social Security. For 25 percent of elderly women who live alone, Social Security is their only source of income. [Institute for Women's Policy Research, 6/00]
Women Impacted More by Risky Privatization Accounts. "Because women earn less than men, they benefit from the current system that provides proportionately higher benefits for low earners. This feature would be lost in a privatized system." [Institute for Women's Policy Research, 6/00]
Paid Family Leave
Lance Voted to Oppose New Jersey Family Leave Bill. In 2007, Lance opposed a family leave bill that would grant workers up to 12 weeks of paid leave to care for a newborn baby, a sick family member or an adopted child, and would pay them two-thirds of their salary to a maximum of $488. Lance told the New Jersey Business and Industry Association that mandating paid leave "would be very damaging to our competitiveness," the association said. [The Record, 4/25/07]
New York Times Lauded New Jersey's Paid Leave Bill. A NYT editorial wrote, "Members of Congress and state legislatures talk about family values. But unlike those in other developed countries, they have not done much to help workers with new babies or sick family members. The New Jersey Legislature is in position to become just the third state to address this problem." [NYT, 2/26/08]