Shenna Bellows with NOW ralliers at the Supreme Court
If you've been following the campaign of progressive challenger Shenna Bellows
(ME-Sen), you know she's been running an ambitious schedule of house parties and events from Kittery to Presque Isle, criss-crossing the state's 16 counties and 504 towns constantly since last October.
Today, though, she's on her opponent's home turf. Inside the beltway, that is, where Collins has spent the past 18 years.
During that time, Collins has had a mixed record on reproductive rights. While she's been better than most of her caucus, she voted to confirm two of the conservative justices that will be weighing the Hobby Lobby case. And she voted to advance the Blunt amendment, which would have allowed employers to deny women access to birth control.
Bellows released a statement about the Hobby Lobby case yesterday:
“You can’t be pro-choice and vote to limit access to birth control,” said Bellows. “Decisions about birth control should be made by a woman in consultation with her doctor, not the government and certainly not her boss. It is wrong to allow employers to interfere with women’s decisions about family planning.”
The former Executive Director of the ACLU of Maine, Bellows has been a leader
on reproductive rights.
The lawsuits highlight an important policy difference between Bellows and her opponent, Republican incumbent Susan Collins. Bellows has been a long-time advocate for women’s health and reproductive freedom as a leader in the Maine Choice Coalition. Bellows was a key member of the Maine Choice Coalition lobby team, which defeated several anti-contraception and anti-abortion measures over the last eight years.
Bellows has been endorsed by Feminist Majority PAC and the National Organization for Women’s NOW PAC. Bellows has received numerous awards for her work on women’s health and reproductive freedom from groups including University of Maine Women’s Studies Department, Mabel Wadsworth Women’s Health Center, the American Association of University Women, and the Frances Perkins Center.
Today, Shenna is proud to stand with the ACLU, Planned Parenthood, NARAL, and in solidarity with the two-thirds of women voters
who oppose allowing corporations like Hobby Lobby to make contraceptive decisions for their employees.
Shenna Bellows with NARAL PAC founder Karen Mulhauser at the Supreme Court, 3/25/14.
And where does Susan Collins stand on this landmark case?
If you have any clues, please share in the comments. As with most controversial issues, she's made no clear statement of her position.
Shenna Bellows has the Courage to Lead.