Choice is an issue on every single ballot

Oh no, I’m in a very red district, I don’t want to mention it!

So let me make this clear: your unwillingness to mention it does nothing to stop your opponent from bringing it up and you can absolutely bet that they will. Why leave it up to the Republican to be the only person discussing the issue and putting you on defense all the way to election day?

Start asking big questions right away: If you were to win, would you vote for a state ban? A complete ban? Would you ban abortion in cases of rape/incest? To save the life of the pregnant person? Would you ban in cases of ectopic pregnancy?

If they are running for the federal office, the question is similar but covers slightly more ground: Are you committed to a national ban on abortion? Is that what you want? What limits do you have on a national ban?

Even in red districts, there are a lot of voters who are not in agreement with a nationwide ban, or bans that do not protect the health of a mother. Be willing to ask tough questions: does a rapist have parental rights if a woman is forced to carry to term? Are we prepared to increase social services to children born with extreme health issues to single mothers? When do we believe child support should start if we agree that a fetus is a human being?

I get it, there are people who will say: I could ask all of this and make sure I lose, so why would I do that?

Your questions and your campaign makes a difference far beyond your district.

Imagine Democratic candidates as a team. We are all on the same team. If you are running for congress in a bright red district and you know you can’t win, ask the question: do you want a national ban. Record it. Get it on tape and get it out there. Why? Because candidates in purple areas running for US House or US Senate can use those moments to challenge their Republican opponent and say; this is where your caucus is, where are you?

I’ve heard candidates curse about how often “the squad” or “Pelosi” is used against them. I am awaiting campaign ads that say: “here is video of eight different Republicans demanding a national ban on abortion (clip, clip, clip) And where does Senator Rubio stand?” Put pressure on candidates and let’s start linking Republicans to ideas that are disastrously unpopular in their own states.

Here is a recording of someone running for a government seat in (XYZ) red district who wants to criminalize abortion, up to a felony murder. Senator, our state has the death penalty. Do you believe women should get the death penalty for seeking abortion? Because a fellow party member of yours thinks so.

If you are in a race you know you are unlikely to win, you should push this issue — Republicans in those districts must, absolutely must, feed red meat to their constituents to show how anti-choice they are and get the votes they need. Republicans running elsewhere? They absolutely read seeing video clips of Republicans talking about barbaric policies. If they denounce them, they turn off the anti-choice wing of their own party; if they agree with them, they fire up our already on fire base.

Be brave

I’ve been told that even mentioning pro-choice in some districts is the equivalent of risking your own life. I can understand. Understand also that your bravery can be the light that a lot of people need in a period of darkness. Democratic voters need to know that they are not alone and that their outrage is something that is tangible. That you share it with them and that you can recognize this is the moment we talk in blunt terms about what happens next.

We depend on young people to put their lives at risk at clinics when they work there, or when they help escort someone in and out. We don’t often praise how difficult that can be, but we know as a matter of fact so many who undertake that difficult job.

If they can take on something where they are putting themselves out there and making themselves vulnerable, don’t we owe it to all of our constituents to show bravery of our own? What is the worst that can happen? You lose an election. You might win an election, also. The one sure fact is that you will help candidates everywhere with content that shows the true mindset of the Republican party, and it will be very difficult for them to run away from the more election officials have to go out on the record during a campaign and sign on to radical positions.

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