Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
April 24, 2014

EMILY’s List President Indicates Displeasure With Komen Foundation

The Susan G. Komen Foundation will probably not be making EMILY’s List this year.

Unsurprisingly, EMILY’s List President Stephanie Schriock indicated unhappiness today with the breast cancer research organization’s decision to cut off funding from Planned Parenthood.

In a briefing with reporters, Schriock was asked to comment on the controversy. She referenced another breast cancer research fundraising group, the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer.

“Should I start with, we have a million members, and there’s an Avon Walk coming up?” Schriock asked with a laugh.

EMILY’s List is a political organization created to support Democratic women who support abortion rights.

“It is actually, for me and everybody in EMILY’s List, a clear reminder of why what we do every day is so important,” Schriock added.

But the briefing was about the status of EMILY’s List-backed candidates  around the country, and Schriock expressed optimism about the election year ahead. More than once she referred to 2012 as “historic” for the group.

According to Schriock, the group has seen “immense” growth in the past year. “We have doubled our community since [Speaker] John Boehner took over the House of Representatives,” she said.

In a typical off-year, Schriock said the group adds 50,000 new members. But in 2011 she said it added more than 640,000 new members. She attributed the growth to a backlash against the Republican-controlled House. She added that the star power of EMILY’s List candidates, namely Elizabeth Warren and Tammy Baldwin, has been a factor in the group’s growth.

One Senate candidate backed by EMILY’s List has had trouble getting establishment support in Washington, D.C.: former Connecticut Secretary of State Susan Bysiewicz.

At a December news conference touting female Senate candidates, Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee Chairwoman Patty Murray (Wash.) barely mentioned Bysiewicz. She instead focused her praise on another Democratic candidate in the primary, Rep. Christopher Murphy.

When pressed on whether that is frustrating to her group, Schriock said, “Connecticut voters are going to vote for a Democrat against Linda McMahon in November, and EMILY’s List is going to do everything we can to ensure that that Democrat is Susan Bysiewicz.”

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