a letter to the editor from Deb Fitzpatrick

WOMENWINNING

Organization remains on-target

The writer of “There’s reason to believe local organization has lost its way” (Readers Write, May 22) seriously misrepresents the mission and impact of womenwinning. womenwinning was founded 35 years ago by a group of pro-choice Democrat and Republican women who believed that increasing pro-choice women’s representation in elected offices across Minnesota meant working across party lines.

Today, this ability to bridge differences remains critical to the mission. Despite increasing partisanship at all levels of government, womenwinning has retained its commitment to electing women who defend abortion rights, regardless of their political party. While the candidates womenwinning endorses are leaders on issues across the policy spectrum, the right to choose remains the singular focus of the organization’s political work — and this focus has helped the organization double the number of pro-choice women legislators, county commissioners and mayors in Minnesota since 1982.

None of this is meant to imply that other issues like health care and the minimum wage aren’t also important to women’s lives or that efforts to support political leadership in those areas aren’t also valuable — but womenwinning has remained true to its focus on electing pro-choice women.

It is more important than ever that we stand together in support of a woman’s right to choose. As womenwinning demonstrates with its long history of results, it is possible to move beyond partisanship when we find shared values and work toward them together.

Debra Fitzpatrick, St. Louis Park

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