Niki Tsongas won the Democratic primary yesterday for her Congressional bid in Massachusetts' fifth district, where US Representative Martin Meehan (D) has announced he will be stepping down after serving in Congress for 14 years. Tsongas, who has support from the Feminist Majority PAC and EMILY's List, beat out four other contenders in the primary, winning 36 percent of the vote. "This is round one," Tsongas told the Associated Press. "Make no mistake. This election will be a referendum on the presidency of George W. Bush."
Tsongas ran on a multi-issue platform, stressing the importance of ending the Iraq war, reforming the health care system, and preserving the environment. A self-described activist for progressive change, Tsongas points to her experiences as a dean at Massachusetts' largest community college, a member of both corporate and non-profit boards, and a seasoned political campaigner to show that she is committed to going "to Washington to effect change and help facilitate the solutions our country so desperately needs." funny picturesfunny imagesfunny photosfunny animal picturesfunny dog picturesfunny cat picturesfunny gifs
In the general election, Tsongas, the daughter of an Air Force colonel, will face Republican Jim Ogonowski, a retired Air Force colonel whose brother was captain of one of the planes hijacked on September 11 and flown into the World Trade Center.
Tsongas' late husband, former Senator Paul Tsongas, formerly held the seat in Massachusetts' fifth district. He went on to serve as a senator and made a run for the Democratic presidential nomination in 1992. Paul Tsongas passed away in 1997 after battling cancer and pneumonia.
Media Resources: AP 9/5/07, 9/4/07; Boston Globe 9/5/07; NikiTsongas.com
8/28/2015 Alaska Court Protects Abortion Access for Low-Income Women - The Alaska Superior Court struck down a state law yesterday that would have severely limited abortion access for low-income women in Alaska.
The state's Superior Court also struck down a Department of Health and Social Services regulation that placed narrow specifications on Medicaid coverage for abortions, requiring that Medicaid-funded abortions be determined by a physician to be "medically necessary." Last year, the Center for Reproductive Rights, the American Civil Liberties Union, and Planned Parenthood sued on behalf of the Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest, claiming that the narrow definition of "medically necessary" arbitrarily established conditions designed to restrict the ability of low-income women to access abortion services.
The law was temporarily blocked last July by an Alaskan state court judge.
Superior Court Judge John Suddock ordered yesterday that the state be blocked from implementing this regulation, ruling that it placed an undue burden on low-income women seeking abortion services in Alaska.
"By providing health care to all poor Alaskans except women who need abortions, the challenged regulation violates the state constitutional guarantee of 'equal rights, opportunities, and protection under the law'," the ruling read.
"We applaud the superior court for striing down these cruel restrictions on women's health and rights that violate the Alaska Constitution," said Chris Charbonneau, CEO of Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest and the Hawaiian Islands. . . .
8/26/2015 Saudi Women Prepare to Vote for the First Time - The fight for gender equality is making slow but notable progress in Saudi Arabia, where women will be allowed to vote for the first time in upcoming December elections.
This shift in Saudi law came in 2011, when a royal decree announced that women would be allowed to vote and run in local elections beginning in December of 2015. . . .