NOW/PAC Prepares for '96

by Linda Berg
Alice Palmer, NOW/PAC endorsed candidate for Congress from Illinois.  Palmer is running for the open seat formerly held by Mel Reynolds.

The sky will stop falling -- don't despair. NOW/PAC wishes you to remember a few basic facts. First of all, Newt Gingrich and his reactionary cronies were elected to office -- they can and will be replaced. Second, all it would take to kick Newt off of his speaker's chair is a switch of 14 seats. And third, and most important, polls show that the public is finally offended by the mean-spirited, punitive and reactionary policies being put forth by Congress.

 The NOW/PAC has been meeting and has developed a plan of action to defeat the enemies of women's rights who are sitting in elected office. NOW activists throughout the country are recruiting staunch supporters of women's rights to run as candidates for school boards, county boards, the statehouses as well as the U.S. House and Senate. NOW/PAC knows the importance of having women in the political pipeline -- ready and qualified to run for higher office as those seats become available.

 We understand the importance of not only recruitment, but also training and funding. NOW/PAC has made a commitment to strengthening our grass roots -- for it is in each community and district that most of the real feminist work must be done.

 For two decades, the NOW/PAC has recruited, trained, organized, raised money and gotten out the vote for dozens of feminists in states across the country: women like Barbara Fleishauer, former West Virginia NOW President who now sits in the West Virginia state legislature. And Sue Errington, former Indiana NOW President and national board member who now is the chair of the Muncie County Council.

 NOW/PAC's early support was instrumental in electing Carol Moseley-Braun, D-Ill., to the U.S. Senate and Eva Clayton, D-N.C., to the U.S. House. And we continue to support the electoral ambitions of women like Cynthia Ruccia who tried unsuccessfully to unseat Rep. John Kasich, R-Ohio, in 1994 -- and is planning to try again.

 In addition to recruiting candidates to replace the enemies of women's rights, the NOW/PAC is committed to protecting our strong, effective feminists in Congress, such as Rep. Lynn Rivers, D-Mich., Rep. Elizabeth Furse, D-Ore., Rep. Jane Harman, D-Calif., and, of course, Rep. Cynthia McKinney, D-Ga., whose redistricting has become symbolic of the racism and sexism that is still so pervasive.

 Our long-term political plan grows out of the experience we gained after our struggle for the ERA. Although some people think that 1992's "Year of the Woman" was an accident, we knew better. The fact that so many women were positioned to run for office then was a direct result of NOW's work to put women into the pipeline in the decade following the 1980 census.

 New district lines are drawn every ten years after the census results are in and -- since women run best in open seats -- we are positioning progressive, compassionate and, most importantly, feminist women in the state and local political pipelines in order to take advantage of the opportunities that we know will emerge in 2002.

 As the struggle continues to protect our friends in Congress and elect more feminiss to join them, and as the NOW/PAC launches our long-term strategy to put even more women into the electoral pipeline -- to pack the state houses and county councils with pro-women lawmakers, it has never been more critical for feminists everywhere to get involved. Can we count on your help in electing leaders who support women for a change? You can do so by making a generous contribution to the NOW/PAC today.

To send a contribution to the NOW/PAC, send the following information to:

1000 16th Street, NW, Suite 700
Washington, D.C. 20036-5705

YES! I want to help NOW/PAC stop the right wing in its tracks.

 Enclosed is my contribution of $:





Note: Contributions to NOW/PAC are not tax deductible. You must be a NOW member to contribute -- to verify, please include a NNT mailing label or a copy of your membership card.

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