Political Radar

`She's a glass ceiling breaker ...'

May 7th, 2013

U.S. Rep. Colleen Hanabusa was endorsed on Tuesday by EMILY's List, the national political action committee that helps elect Democratic women who favor abortion rights.

The endorsement could help Hanabusa with national fundraising in her Democratic primary campaign next year against U.S. Sen. Brian Schatz.

EMILY's List supported U.S. Sen. Mazie Hirono over former congressman Ed Case in the Democratic primary for U.S. Senate last year, as well as U.S. Rep. Tulsi Gabbard over former Honolulu Mayor Mufi Hannemann in the Democratic primary for the 2nd Congressional District, which covers rural Oahu and the neighbor islands.

EMILY's List, in a statement on the Hanabusa endorsement, said that if Hanabusa wins next year, Hawaii would be the fourth state with two women senators.

From Stephanie Schriock, EMILY's List president:

Colleen Hanabusa is an experienced progressive champion who has spent her career serving the people of Hawaii with passion and integrity. She’s a glass ceiling breaker who was the first woman in Hawaii, and first Asian American woman in the country, to lead a state legislative chamber.

Hawaii has a rich tradition of women’s leadership and EMILY’s List is proud to have helped Colleen be a part of it.

Now the EMILY’s List community is ready to fight for her every step of the way so that she can take her place as a senator from Hawaii. Colleen is the right choice for women and families in Hawaii, and EMILY’s List won’t stop until she shatters yet another glass ceiling by making Hawaii the fourth state to send two women to the United States Senate.

5 Responses to “`She's a glass ceiling breaker ...'”

  1. Alahaki:

    Didn't we already know this last week? I guess a press release warrants a second announcement? Frankly, it's a bit creepy that a Mainland group will weigh so heavily into our politics (twice) just because it wants Hawaii to be "first" so bad, fitting it's agenda. I know it happens all the time, but it is what it is.

  2. Kolea:

    I suggest Emily's List throws the word "progressive" around without bothering to define what it means to them. The slogan "New and Improved" must have been taken.

    There is definitely a need for affirmative action for underrepresented groups. And women are underrepresented in the US Senate. But Hawaii's congressional delegation DOES NOT have an underrepresentation of women, so the idea we should elect one candidate over another because of their gender does not strike me as particularly "progressive." Indeed, it strikes me as chauvinist and backward.

    When Emily's List works to replace regressive men, whether Democratic or Republican, with pro-choice women, that would tend to be progressive. But Schatz's record on reproductive rights and equality for women is as good as Colleen's and on equality for gays and lesbians, his record is significantly better. And Hanabusa explicitly does NOT support marriage equality for gays and lesbians, while Brian does.

    How EL can decide she her election would provide more "progress" than Schatz's remains a mystery. Unless they are willing to sacrifice gay and lesbian equality for the symbolism of Hawaii having two senators.

  3. Goober:

    I also saw an ad for a used politician on Craig's list.

    Women in politics don't need a chip on their shoulders.

    Both hannabusa and schatz have that empty feeling
    in their support wear.

  4. ohiaforest3400:

    Kolea, I get your point but it would be stronger if the endorsement had been made by a similar local group. THEN, a group such as Emily's List here would have a tough time saying we need Hanabusa for diversity. But Emily's List is NOT from here, their concern is for the Senate as a whole, and electing another woman, even if she is from a state whose other sentator is a woman (of the same national origin), will improve diversity in the Senate.

    Still, I get your point that, if they have limited resources, better to use them to bump off some ossified white guy, not a young one whose only possible shortcoming in their eyes -- and apparently the only one relevant to them -- is his reproductive plumbing.

  5. hipoli:

    Ceilings aren't the only thing she's known to break.

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