Justice PAC Endorses Commissioner Brad Avakian for Secretary of State To Protect Women’s Rights and Equality. 

October 12, 2016

Today our Justice PAC endorsed Brad Avakian for Secretary of State and handed him a $10,000 check.  
Brad Avakian is the real champion for women in this race.  As Labor Commissioner Avakian proved he will fight for all Oregonians and will stand up to discrimination.
Respectfully, under no circumstances can we support Conservative Republican Dennis Richardson for Secretary of State when taking into consideration the bills he has sponsored and the statements he has made about women, which include:
* “Richardson showed his true colors back in 1990 when he wrote an outrageous letter to The Oregonian insisting that “  woman relinquishes her unfettered right to control her own body when her actions cause the conception of a baby.”
* In 2005, Richardson introduced a fetal “personhood” bill.
* In 2007, Richardson was one of only nine House members to vote against a bill requiring insurance companies to cover birth control and requiring hospitals to offer emergency contraceptives to women after a sexual assault.
* In 2009, Richardson was one of only 19 votes against medically accurate, age-appropriate sexual health education.
In this climate of candidates bragging about and condoning sexual assault, candidates not realizing that ALL women can be victims of domestic violence and in general a climate where women are still working day by day just to protect their basic human rights of their reproductive life and the right to be safe, we cannot support another candidate who has proven to not support women.
Many don’t think of the position of Secretary of State with these capabilities because they are actions performed in a less direct manner than a legislator for example who must put their name on policy they support in the form of sponsorship. The Secretary of State’s office is the agency in charge of ballot initiatives, state audits, and elections.  Without question the head of the agency, the Secretary of State, is in a position and has the capacity to work for or against women and why take the chance when there are records on both candidates to prove who the real champion for women is? We cannot take that chance.  
In addition, the Secretary of State is 1st in line of succession for Governor and if the Governor cannot perform their duties it is the Secretary of State who is given this authority.  
Lastly, in a situation of the next Governor’s race, it is the Secretary of State who is closest to the position of Governor and who has an advantage in competing for the position of Governor.
—–Leanne Littrell

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