Conservatives have been trying to dictate medical decisions to women seeking an abortion, defund Planned Parenthood, cut funding for prenatal services and repeal Obamacare -- the law that, among other things, prevents insurers from charging women higher rates. The Republican-led effort against women's reproductive rights is a bizarre reflection of their agenda to set back social progress 50 years or more.
I support a woman's right to reproductive freedom and will vote against any statutory or constitutional measure that would repeal or reduce any currently existing reproductive rights or freedoms, or which jeopardize or degrade the confidential relationship between a patient and her doctor.
But there's much more to "women's issues" than reproductive rights. To support working women and their families, we must close the gender pay gap and seriously address the poverty rate among women and children.
In the Maine Legislature, I have battled attempts to insert government into the sacred doctor-client privilege, but also to weaken child labor laws, prohibit unions in women-dominated child care, shift income taxes to the middle class and put more guns in the hands of teenagers. These are the issues women care about.
The Maine Women's Lobby gave me a 100% rating in its most recent review because, in six years in the Legislature, I supported legislation that creates economic opportunities and protects fundamental rights, especially for women and children. I voted to increase the minimum wage, expand family leave, strengthen unions, empower child-care workers to collectively bargain, reform the tax code, and expand broadband to rural communities where women struggle disproportionately to access education, job training and global markets.