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Filtering by Tag: Obama

Florida "Uterus Controversy" Song Parody


Amidst the war on women, especially with our Democratic President - who won with the 13-point margin provided by women voters - "conceding," a.k.a. throwing the women under the bus AGAIN, the following song over the Florida "uterus controversy" gives me hope about feminism in America.

N. Jerin Arifa
National NOW Board of Directors
National NOW Young Feminist Task Force, Chair
NOW – NYS Young Feminist Task Force, Chair
National Organization for Women (NOW)

NOW Looks Forward to 'Sputnik Moment' for Women


NOW Press Release
For Immediate Release
Contact: Mai Shiozaki, 202-628-8669, ext. 116
NOW Looks Forward to 'Sputnik Moment' for Women
Statement of NOW President Terry O'Neill
January 26, 2011
In last night's State of the Union address, President Barack Obama proclaimed this point in time to be "our generation's Sputnik moment." As the president reaches for the stars, the National Organization for Women will be working to ensure that the women of this nation are lifted up as well.
President Obama spoke about creating jobs through building our country's physical infrastructure, investing in research and development, and reinventing our energy industry. Worthy objectives -- but currently these fields are dominated by men. Much work remains to be done to bring women into parity in these vocations, known as STEM (science, technology, engineering and math). For example, when we talk about "green jobs," Wider Opportunities for Women found that two-thirds of all women are clustered in only 21 of the 500 green job categories. If these jobs our are future, women must be included.
Next month, I will take part in the 55th session of the U.N. Commission on the Status of Women, which will focus on the access and participation of women and girls in STEM. However, until we make significant progress in this area, if we want to talk about creating jobs for women, we have to talk about rebuilding our human infrastructure -- including teaching, nursing and social work. These positions not only employ women but they serve some of the most vulnerable people in our country, those the president promised to safeguard.
Most people may not even be aware that women are actually losing ground in the current economic recovery. From July 2009 to December 2010, according to the National Women's Law Center, women lost jobs while men gained, with women losing 99.6 percent of the 257,000 jobs cut from the public sector. And long-term unemployment is worsening for women.
For these reasons, we are heartened that President Obama announced he would work to strengthen Social Security without risking current retirees or slashing benefits for future generations. Women, particularly women of color, depend greatly on Social Security. Often it is their only income in retirement. NOW has been vigorously campaigning to protect and reinforce Social Security, and we are pleased to see that the steady stream of messages from women's rights supporters has made an impact. However, the forces behind dismantling Social Security are powerful, determined and crafty. The president must remain firm as he stands up to the foes of government programs that help people instead of big business.
The president said: "We do big things." I can't think of anything bigger than guaranteeing jobs, opportunity, security and equality to the women of the United States and around the world.

Action Alert: Watchdog Not Lapdog Needed to Reform Wall Street


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NOW Action Alert
Watchdog Not Lapdog Needed to Reform Wall Street, Tell Obama to Nominate Elizabeth Warren to Head Consumer Financial Protection Bureau
After taking action, please support our work!
On July 23, President Obama signed into law a sweeping financial reform bill, which created the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, a government agency that would closely monitor Wall Street practices concerning credit and loans. Such an agency was originally proposed by Elizabeth Warren, a Harvard professor and expert on bankruptcy and credit. Warren is the most qualified and most obvious choice for head of this bureau, but she's definitely not favored by Wall Street and its sympathizers in the government.
If confirmed, Warren would protect consumers from further economic meltdowns caused by shady loans and credit. She would also demand accountability and consumer-friendly practices from Wall Street banks. But she's not part of the old boys club, so NOW asks: Could sexism be at work in denying her this position?
Write President Obama today and tell him that the people of the United States want a head of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau who will promote the interests of consumers, not the interests of big banks. Tell him we want Elizabeth Warren!
Take Action NOW!
In 2007, Elizabeth Warren, a Harvard Law professor, wrote an article in Democracy: A Journal of Ideas that proposed the creation of a government agency to protect consumers from duplicitous credit practices, much the same way that consumers are protected from faulty or dangerous products. Three years later, the government has taken Warren's advice and created the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau as part of the Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, passed on July 23.
The bureau would have the power to oversee, analyze, and regulate credit and loans, including credit cards and mortgages. It would protect consumers from any abusive banking practices and would also be able to monitor Wall Street to prevent another economic meltdown. Overall, the purpose of the bureau is consumer protection, and it needs a head who will be on the side of everyday people, not the rich and superrich.
Elizabeth Warren is more than qualified to head this bureau. She is an expert on bankruptcy, a distinguished researcher and the chair of the Congressional Oversight Panel, which monitored the Wall Street bailouts. Her background, experience, and commitment to the welfare of consumers make her the most obvious choice for head of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.
However, those on Wall Street and government officials who support them do not want Warren to head the bureau, as they know that she would boldly stand up for consumers and crack down on the underhanded practices of big banks. U.S. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner has voiced objections to Warren, and though he's since described her as "an enormously effective leader," he still has not said that he would recommend her nomination.
Some of the president's top financial advisors, like Larry Summers, have expressed biased and blatantly sexist views about women's abilities. In 2005, Summers said, concerning women's aptitude for science and math, "It does appear that on many, many different human attributes--overall IQ, mathematical ability, scientific ability--there is relatively clear evidence that …there is a difference in the standard deviation, and variability of a male and a female population." Essentially, he claimed that men are innately inclined to be better at math and science than women. Let's hope that Obama doesn't listen to Summers on this decision!
The consumers of the U.S. need a strong watchdog like Elizabeth Warren to head the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, not a Wall Street lapdog.
Take action NOW by emailing President Obama!

take action and then donate
SUPPORT NOW: Donate to NOW | Join NOW

Obama Administration Applies Stupak Amendment to High Risk Pools


The following post on RH Reality Check explains why the most recent anti-choice act to come out of the Obama administration is such a slap in the face for all of us who spent time and money fighting for reproductive rights in healthcare reform.  Co-chair Meghan and I were in DC on two separate occasions to lobby our legislators to exclude Stupak-like provisions in the healthcare reform.  Other taskforce members like Michelle, Stacy, Esty, Dan, and Sabrina organized in NY and DC toward the same goal.  It seems our efforts were fruitless since the President many of us worked hard to elect lied about being pro-choice and decided to throw women under the bus.

In Solidarity,
Jerin Alam
National NOW Political Action Committee
National NOW Young Feminist Task Force
NOW – NYS Young Feminist Task Force 
National Organization for Women (NOW)

Obama Administration Applies Stupak Amendment to High Risk Pools

NOW Applauds President Obama's Historic Nomination to Supreme Court


NOW logo
For Immediate Release
Contact: Mai Shiozaki, 202-628-8669, ext. 116
NOW Applauds President Obama's Historic Nomination to Supreme Court
May 10, 2010
The National Organization for Women applauds President Barack Obama's decision to nominate a woman to follow Justice John Paul Stevens on the U.S. Supreme Court. Upon confirmation by the U.S. Senate, Solicitor General Elena Kagan would join Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Sonia Sotomayor to become the third woman currently sitting on the Supreme Court -- a historic achievement.
"Women have been under-represented on the Supreme Court for far too long," said NOW President Terry O'Neill. "When Justice Stevens announced his upcoming retirement, NOW called on President Obama to nominate a woman to increase women's representation to an all-time high of one-third. We are pleased that the president heard us and apparently agrees that it is about time for women to make up a critical mass on the Supreme Court."
As the first woman to serve as U.S. solicitor general and the first female dean of Harvard Law School, Kagan is eminently qualified. She was a law clerk for Justice Thurgood Marshall and has argued six cases before the current justices.
"While we are pleased to see the second woman in a row nominated to the court, gender alone is not enough," said O'Neill. "Justice Stevens was a clear champion of social justice, who will leave behind a proud liberal legacy. We are eager to learn that Elena Kagan, too, will stand for equality and fairness across the board."
Encouragingly, Kagan has expressed clear opposition to the discriminatory Don't Ask, Don't Tell policy that has forced out thousands of lesbian and gay service members from the military. However, having never served as a judge herself, it is unclear where Kagan stands on most of NOW's key issues.
"NOW will closely monitor the confirmation process," promised O'Neill. "We will listen carefully to Elena Kagan's answers, to determine if she will be a defender of the rights of women, racial minorities, the poor and other oppressed groups. And we will follow the comments of the senators and the media, as both have a history of sexist treatment of women nominees. As Elena Kagan prepares to add another crack to the marble ceiling, we hope to see that stereotyped attitudes at long last, are history."

NOW.org | Support NOW | Press Room | View Online | Subscribe |

Pres Obama endorses Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney's campaign


I am pleased to announce that our campaign has received the endorsement of President Barack Obama.

I had the honor of working with our President to pass the historic healthcare reform bill.  President Obama also signed into law my Credit Cardholders' Bill of Rights legislation, which reigned in the abuses of the credit card industry.  And just last week he signed my bill to ban fake Census mailers. With all of the progress we’ve made, his endorsement couldn’t have come at a more meaningful time.

Working for change with President Obama has brought enormous success, and it means so much to me to be recognized by our President for all that we’ve accomplished.

But we’re just getting started.  After huge strides in healthcare, I look forward to working with the White House to ensure 9/11 first responders get the care they deserve.  And in New York, we are pressing forward with the 2nd Avenue Subway and East Side Connector projects, which are already creating jobs for thousands of New Yorkers.

With your support and the support of the President, I know we can continue the fight for reform together.

Carolyn Maloney

P.S.  Have you seen our new website yet?  Please visit us at Carolynmaloney.com

Follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

Paid for by Maloney for Congress
24 E 93rd Street, Ste 1B
New York, NY 10128

Stop right-wing frenzy over Supreme Court vacancy


Only hours after we said good riddance to anti-choice Rep. Bart Stupak (D-Mich.), we learned that Justice John Paul Stevens was set to announce his decision to retire from the Supreme Court.
We can't thank Justice Stevens enough for his years of public service and respect for individual freedom. Without Supreme Court justices like Stevens who support the constitutional right to privacy, abortion would not be legal today.
Our anti-choice opponents are already using this vacancy to rally their base. Fox News hate-mongerer Glenn Beck sank to new lows when he told his listeners to expect President Obama to pick a "gay, handicapped, black woman, who's an immigrant."1 The unfounded insults and personal attacks are only going to get worse.
We need to fight back against the anti-choice rallying cry, and that begins with President Obama. Join me in calling on President Obama to say no to the right wing.
Justice Stevens is among the strongest supporters of the right to choose currently serving on the Supreme Court, and his retirement is a pivotal moment for pro-choice Americans.
Our opponents are going to flood the White House with messages, and we can't be outnumbered.
We must ensure that President Obama hears from pro-choice people like you this week. He could announce his nominee very soon.
The Supreme Court is just one vote shy of overturning Roe v. Wade. Two justices, Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas, have voted to reverse Roe, and they have been joined by two more like-minded members, Chief Justice John Roberts and Justice Samuel Alito, who voted to eliminate critical protections for women's health that the Court had previously upheld.
President Obama has the opportunity to nominate a fair-minded individual who, like Justice Stevens and the majority of Americans, supports the constitutional right to privacy as reflected in RoeLet's send the president a strong message in support of a pro-choice nominee.
Thanks for getting involved.
My best,
Nancy Keenan
President, NARAL Pro-Choice America

Obama Makes Deal with Anti-Choice Zealots on Backs of Women. Openly Renegs on his Campaign Promise to be a Pro-Choice President.


Obama Makes Deal with Anti-Choice Zealots on the Backs of Women. Openly Renegs on his Campaign Promise to be a Pro-Choice President.

For Immediate Release
March 21, 2010

Contact: Marcia Pappas, 518-452-3944

National Organization for Women-NYS Denounces
"Health Care Reform on the Backs of Women"

ALBANY, NY (03/21/2010)(readMedia)-- NOW-NYS President Marcia Pappas is outraged about President Obama's "kowtowing to a handful of anti-choice zealots who, in spite of all evidence that the Health Care Bill prohibits federally-funded abortion, insisted upon it's reiteration in Executive Order." She says that it's "health care reform on the backs of women and at the price of women's health."

Pappas also objected to Obama's articulating a reinvigorated "conscience clause" through which many essential emergency services are denied. "For example, if a woman is raped, and she is brought to an emergency room, under the conscience clause she could be denied emergency contraception that she might so desperately need."

This executive order comes on the eve of the 38th Anniversary of Baird v Eisenstadt (3/22/10) a landmark U.S. Supreme Court decision legalizing birth control for unmarried people in the United States. That ruling is the foundation for subsequent privacy cases such as Roe v. Wade and Lawrence v. Texas (for gay rights).

Pappas wondered: "Do the people of the United States realize the danger to their heath care rights rooted in the fundamental right to privacy? Do they realize that a small number of misinformed right wing extremists are determined to have the government force women to bear unwanted children?"

NOW-NYS joins with National NOW President Terry O'Neill, who stated: "Through this order, the President has announced he will lend the weight of his office and the entire executive branch to the anti-abortion measures included in the Senate bill, which the House is now prepared to pass. President Obama campaigned as a pro-choice president, but his actions today suggest that his commitment to reproductive health care is shaky at best. The message we have received today is that it is acceptable to negotiate health care on the backs of women, and we couldn't disagree more."


President Obama Breaks Faith with Women


NOW logo
For Immediate Release
Contact: Mai Shiozaki, 202-628-8669, ext. 116; cell 202-641-1906
President Obama Breaks Faith with Women
Statement of NOW President Terry O'Neill
March 21, 2010
The National Organization for Women is incensed that President Barack Obama agreed today to issue an executive order designed to appease a handful of anti-choice Democrats who have held up health care reform in an effort to restrict women's access to abortion. Through this order, the president has announced he will lend the weight of his office and the entire executive branch to the anti-abortion measures included in the Senate bill, which the House is now prepared to pass.
President Obama campaigned as a pro-choice president, but his actions today suggest that his commitment to reproductive health care is shaky at best. Contrary to language in the draft of the executive order and repeated assertions in the news, the Hyde Amendment is not settled law -- it is an illegitimate tack-on to an annual must-pass appropriations bill. NOW has a longstanding objection to Hyde and, in fact, was looking forward to working with this president and Congress to bring an end to these restrictions. We see now that we have our work cut out for us far beyond what we ever anticipated. The message we have received today is that it is acceptable to negotiate health care on the backs of women, and we couldn't disagree more.

NOW.org | Press Room | View Online | Subscribe |

Open Letter to the Women in Congress from Marcia Pappas, President of NOW-NYS. Stop Stupak! WALK OUT!


Open Letter to Women in Congress
Stop Stupak...WALK OUT!

Press Release
March 20, 2010

NOW-NYS President Marcia Pappas Says: STOP STUPAK!
Women in Congress Should make History and WALK OUT!
According to NOW-NYS (National Organization For Women) President Marcia Pappas, President Barack Obama, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid "are making a deal with the devil." Pappas explained: "Through a nefarious parliamentary procedure, the extreme anti-choice "Stupak" language (forbidding even privately-funded abortion coverage) would be tied to the Health Care Bill, which already contains a funding prohibition which satisfies even thousands of Catholic nuns. What these Democrats don't know is that their quest to make health-reform history will not wash away the blood on their hands from women forced into illegal, unsafe abortions.

Pro-choice House members are reportedly in vehement revolt, threatening to kill the health care bill. And in an already widely-circulated article by Jane Hamsher in Firedog-3/19/19 http://fdlaction.firedoglake.com/author/Jane-2/ , Pappas urges Congressional women to take immediate action:
March 19, 2010
Open letter to every woman in Congress:
Today, women in the United States are fighting for their lives. You must fight too! A woman's right to have safe and legal abortion is about to be traded away.
We are asking all of you fight like you have never fought before. Tonight, It has become clear that the our Democratic President Obama, Democratic Speaker of the House (Nancy Pelosi) and Democratic Leader (Harry Reid) are trading away women's lives.
Every woman in Congress should MAKE HISTORY AND WALK OUT! This is your chance to stand up for what is right! Forget politics, forget saving your seat! You must take a chance! If you sit back and allow the passage of the health care bill with "Stupak," women in America will not vote for another Democrat.....myself included. Because there will essentially be no difference between the Democrats and the Republicans.
What will it be? Will you all go down in history following the boys, or will you finally stand up for what is right? It's up to all of you. We elected you because we believed that having women at the table would make a difference. Don't let us down.
NOW-NYS President Marcia Pappas

Of Obama's recent contention that legislation is "messy" Pappas wondered: "President Obama, I ask you, who is going clean up this mess when women cannot get safe and legal abortion? Who is going to help those women and how will their faith help them?"