Today, American Bridge and UltraViolet PAC are launching a new campaign targeting Sen. Ted Cruz and Rep. Pete Sessions with grassroots actions across Texas. The campaign, “Worst for Women,” highlights more than a dozen members of Congress as the “Worst for Women” with digital ads and a new micro-site featuring an inaugural legislative scorecard.
Texans concerned with Cruz and Sessions’ dangerous and extreme agenda are presenting the “Worst for Women” award to Sen. Cruz and Rep. Sessions’ offices in Dallas, Austin, and Washington D.C. today.
The Worst for Women five-figure digital buy has begun, and directs persuadable female voters to learn about Cruz and Sessions’ record on the Worst for Women micro-site, here: http://worstforwomen.
Cruz and Sessions tout Trump’s dangerous and extreme agenda—voting in line with Trump as much as 98 percent of the time. They’ve consistently voted to repeal health care, to protect the special interests and profits for the 1%, to defund Planned Parenthood, and against a woman’s right to choose. These members are threatening the lives of women across the country—particularly women of color, rural women, and low-income women.
To create the list of the ‘Worst for Women’ candidates, American Bridge and UltraViolet PAC conducted an analysis of the voting records from the 114th Congress and 115th Congress and narrowed down a list of those who voted to repeal the Affordable Care Act, to defund Planned Parenthood, for the GOP tax scam, against a minimum wage hike, and for an unconstitutional abortion ban. The groups also took into consideration other parts of the members’ records and histories, including sexist remarks or discriminatory practices.
“Women are poised to play a key role in November. We don’t intend to let that opportunity slip by,” said Shaunna Thomas, executive director of UltraViolet PAC, a leading national women’s organization. “Each and every one of these Congress members is an active threat to women in every respect, whether in their access to health care, fair workplace protections, or protections and recourse for survivors of gendered violence. It’s not just about these members’ demonstrated misogyny—it’s their undermining of low-income women, women of color, and immigrant women in federal policy.”
“If you are a member of Congress putting women’s rights, livelihoods, and actual lives at risk—start making plans for a long vacation after election day, because your political career ends in November,” said Bradley Beychok, president and co-founder of American Bridge.
In conjunction with the announcement of the new microsite, new digital ads on Facebook will link Cruz, Sessions, and other members of Congress with the very worst votes they have cast against women and are sourced back to the new micro-site and legislative scorecard so voters can learn more about these reckless individuals’ support for some of the most extreme anti-woman, racist, anti-immigrant, and homophobic elements of government today. For example, Congressman Jason Lewis bemoaned no longer being able to call women “sluts,” and referred to women voters as “without a brain,” “ignorant,” and “not thinking.”
The members of Congress named as the “Worst for Women” are: Rep. Don Bacon (NE-2); Rep. Dave Brat (VA-7); Rep. Ted Budd (NC-13); Sen. Ted Cruz (TX); Rep. Ron DeSantis (FL-6); Rep. Glenn Grothman (WI-6); Rep. Karen Handel (GA-6); Sen. Dean Heller (NV); Rep. Jim Jordan (OH-4); Rep. Steve King (IA-4); Rep. Jason Lewis (MN-2); Rep. Kevin McCarthy (CA-23); Rep. Steve Pearce (NM-2); Rep. Pete Sessions (TX-32); and Rep. Scott Taylor (VA-2).
These members are dangerously out of touch and openly hostile to the women constituents and voters they serve. Many of them are in tight races for re-election or the governor’s mansion. Included in the Worst for Women scorecard are:
- Repeal of the Affordable Care Act. These members all voted to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The ACA has been an overwhelming win for women. It provided health care coverage for many low-income women who previously could not afford it. It ended the industry practice of charging women more than men for insurance policies. It required maternity and newborn care benefits in individual market health plans. It provided free preventive services for women, including contraception and breast pumps for nursing mothers. It protected domestic violence survivors from insurance penalties. It has saved countless women’s lives.
- GOP Tax Scam. These members all voted for the GOP tax scam that provided billions in tax cuts to the wealthiest 1% of Americans—of which women are only a fraction. The tax reform bill forced working women and families to pay for benefits for big business and wealthy elites while threatening critical programs for women, including Medicaid, Medicare, child care, housing assistance, Pell Grants, funds for combating violence against women, and more.
- Planned Parenthood and Title X. These members repeatedly voted to defund Planned Parenthood and to dismantle Title X, the successful nearly 50 year old family planning program serving four million patients. Planned Parenthood provides preventive care, contraception, cancer screenings, and more for millions of men and women each year. Many of these members, like Cruz and King, are openly opposed to women having access to contraception.
- Minimum wage and workers’ protections. All of these members voted against a raise in the minimum wage—which has been stuck at $7.25 for nearly a decade. Two-thirds of minimum wage workers are women and in some states it’s as much as three-quarters. Many of these members are opposed to simple workers’ protections like paid sick days, paid family leave, and pay equity laws. Glenn Grothman once led the fight against pay equity in his state, noting, “money is more important for men.” Karen Handel openly stated, “I do not support a livable wage.”
- 20 week abortion ban without protections. These members all put politics over women’s lives when they voted for an unconstitutional ban on nearly all abortions after 20 weeks. It also put “onerous reporting requirements” on rape and incest victims and employed junk science that misled Americans.
American Bridge 21st Century is a progressive research and communications organization committed to holding Republicans accountable for their words and actions and helping you ascertain when Republican candidates are pretending to be something they’re not.
UltraViolet PAC is a community of over one million people spanning every state and congressional district who fight to end sexism and expand equality at the ballot box and beyond