Tag Archives: Congresswoman

Erika Harold: Harvard law graduate and former Miss America runs for Congress

Republican candidate Erika Harold
Republican candidate Erika Harold

The Weekly Standard reports.

Excerpt:

The most interesting House primary of the 2014 cycle began in June in the 13th District of Illinois. It pits freshman Republican congressman Rodney Davis against an insurgent candidate named Erika Harold. Davis is a political operative who won his seat last year nearly by accident. Erika Harold is a 33-year-old lawyer. Who happens to have been Miss America.

[…]In addition to the charisma and poise native to good politicians, Harold has exhibited the principled toughness of the best pols. And again, to appreciate this aspect of her character, you need only go back to Miss America.

Her platform as a Miss America candidate included abstinence:

Harold competed three times for the Miss Illinois crown, which she finally won in 2003. Each time, she ran on a platform of abstinence. But one of the arcane traditions of Miss America is that while contestants choose their own platforms when competing for the state crown, it’s the state organization that decides what platform the winner will take to Atlantic City. The year Harold was named Miss Illinois, her state committee settled on a bland platform opposing “youth violence.” (Think of it as “world peace,” for the children.) Harold agreed to oppose youth violence.

After she was named Miss America, however, Harold decided to add abstinence to her platform for the year of her reign. She didn’t abandon “youth violence” but rather included it, along with abstinence, in a broad appeal to kids to respect themselves by standing up to bullies and avoiding sex, drugs, and alcohol. This was, as a matter of both intellectual coherence and moral sense, a significant improvement on the pure “youth violence” platform she’d been handed. The Miss America organization did not like it one bit.

The organization pushed back hard and told Harold to keep quiet—especially about sex. The disagreement made national headlines and culminated in a news conference at the National Press Club in Washington, where the newly crowned Harold told reporters, “I will not be bullied. I’ve gone through enough adversity in my life to stand up for what I believe in.” Miss America stared down the pageant and won.

Promotes fiscal conservativism to African Americans:

Harold was already interested in politics. During a Miss America appearance at East St. Louis High School, students asked her what she wanted to be when she grew up. She told them, “My ultimate goal is that I want to be the first black female president of the United States.” While still an undergraduate at Illinois, she volunteered for conservative Patrick O’Malley’s doomed 2002 Illinois gubernatorial campaign. She also volunteered with the Republican National Committee in an effort to promote conservative economic principles in African-American communities. After graduating from law school, she joined a Chicago firm where her practice has specialized in health care law and religious freedom.

[…][W]hile Harold tries to resist easy classification, her ideological markers are highly suggestive of a conservative worldview. There’s the abstinence, of course. She’s fiercely pro-life. She favors concealed-carry gun laws. And she’s on the board of Prison Fellowship Ministries, the program founded by Chuck Colson.

Focused on religious liberty:

The most interesting part of Harold’s legal practice has been her work defending faith-based entities. In one case, for example, she represented a retirement community affiliated with a religious group. The organization featured a cross on its logo and used a Bible verse in its mission statement—which attracted a lawsuit from an advocacy group contending that this amounted to discrimination. Describing this work, Harold says, “It’s a passion of mine.”

Looking across the broader national landscape, Harold sees ample reason to be concerned about religious freedom. “We’re starting to see ways in which our constitutional protections are being encroached upon,” she says. “We all are less free when any group isn’t afforded their constitutional protections.”

And not just less free, but less well off. Harold says that her time with Prison Fellowship Ministries has deepened her appreciation for the good religious organizations can do. “I’ve seen firsthand the need for there to be a space in public life for religious groups to be able to offer service to their fellow man,” she says. When government seeks to quarantine religious organizations, moving from freedom of religion to “freedom of worship” (to use the formulation President Obama favors), “it’s far too limiting in terms of the good they can do for the public, and it’s far too restrictive in terms of the protections which are afforded religious groups by the Constitution. We give something up when we say that certain voices aren’t welcome in the public square.”

Harold says she intends to make religious freedom an issue in her campaign. This is fitting at a time when the HHS mandate, the Hobby Lobby case, and the torrent of litigation about to be unleashed by the Supreme Court’s gay marriage decisions appear likely to make religious freedom a central front in the culture war.

We have such a deep bench, so there’s reason for optimism – if you’re a Republican like me! Here’s another story I found about another young, female Republican candidate Elise Stefanik. I would not be annoyed at all if all of our candidates were women or minorities or minority women. I wouldn’t even be annoyed if our candidates were some sort of dolphin-alligator hybrid monstrosities, (although I prefer pretty lawyers ladies). The main thing I want is that our candidates are conservative. That’s what really matters to me.

Colonel Martha McSally enters congressional race for vacant Arizona seat

Colonel  Martha McSally
Colonel Martha McSally

From Military.com. (H/T Gateway Pundit)

Excerpt:

The first woman to fly fighters in combat for the Air Force, and first to command a fighter squadron in combat, is entering Arizona’s special election to fill U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords’ vacated congressional seat.

Martha McSally confirmed her intentions Wednesday to join the Republican primary. She made her decision after analyzing three factors: was it feasible, was she electable, and did she feel called to run.

McSally said she’s sure she is the right person for the job. “I believe my leadership and my demonstrated moral courage and experience is what this community and this nation needs right now.”

[…]She commanded a squadron of A-10 attack jets in Afghanistan. After that, she was sent to the Air War College in Alabama, where she finished first in a class of 225 people being groomed as senior leaders. She spent her final three years in the Air Force in Stuttgart, Germany.

Gateway Pundit adds:

Southern Arizona is buzzing with the possible entrance of a new candidate in the special election to replace Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords. Martha McSally, the woman who, in 2002, challenged the Department of Defense rule requiring American servicewoman in Saudi Arabia to dress in a Muslim Abaya and headscarf when travelling off base, reportedly plans to formally announce her candidacy Thursday.

McSally, who retired from the Air Force as a colonel, was also the first woman in United States history to fly in combat, and the first woman to lead a squadron into combat, in the skies above Iraq and Afghanistan. McSally is a Distinguished Graduate of the Air Force Academy, earned her Master’s Degree, in Public Policy, from the JFK School of Government at Harvard, and in 1995 was one of only seven active duty Air Force officers selected for the prestigious Legislative Fellowship Program in Washington. She spent the last few years teaching military and foreign affairs to world leaders at the George C. Marshall Center in Germany.

She’s also champion triathlete and has climbed Mt. Kilimanjaro

Democrats in the Southern Arizona district, are lining up behind former Giffords’ aide Ron Barber to replace the outgoing congresswoman. Barber is being described by local Democrats as a “placeholder” or “caretaker” until the end of Giffords’ term. But it’s hard not to wonder if the entrance of a dynamic, young Republican woman will change the nature of this race.

McSally is conservative, pro-life, pro-2nd amendment, and everything else that voters in a Republican-leaning district are yearning for. So have the Democrats in Arizona’s 8th congressional district made a mistake? Some people are starting to think so. Martha McSally isn’t Gabrielle Giffords. But her dynamic personality, her clear convictions and accomplished resume could be just what conservatives need if they want to win the race that one Washington insider called, “the next biggest thing to the Presidential” race this year.

I’d like to know her views on the definition of marriage, but that’s still a good resume. I think I know one reason why she might be running – her A-10 Thunderbolt II was targeted in the Obama’s administration’s most recent round of cuts to American defense capabilities.

Here’s an interview she did with the radically left-wing 60 Minutes:

Here’s a bit more about the A-10 Thunderbolt II that she flew. (Picture, Specifications)

Part 1 of 2:

Part 2 of 2:

I built a model of one of these as a child, and hung it from the ceiling of my room. A great strike platform. I have mounted Rockeye cluster munitions on these guys when playing Steel Panthers and used them to immobilize/destroy multiple Russian T-72s in one pass. The AGM-65 Mavericks are effective at long range, as well.

How Michele Bachmann’s miscarriage shaped her pro-life views

Michele and Marcus Bachmann
Michele and Marcus Bachmann

From Life News.

Excerpt:

Campaigning in South Carolina, Republican presidential candidate Michele Bachmann said a “devastating” miscarriage helped shape her pro-life views on abortion. The compelling personal story ties in to her rationale for becoming a foster care mom.

While on the campaign trail in Rock Hill, South Carolina, the Minnesota congresswoman revealed she had a miscarriage decades ago and that the event led her to solidify her pro-life views and prompted her and her husband to become a foster home to 23 children over the years.

“After our second child was born, we became pregnant with a third baby,” Bachmann said, according to a Politico report. “And it was an unexpected baby, but of course we were delighted to have this child. And the child was coming along, and we ended up losing that child. And it was devastating for both of us, as you can imagine if any of you have lost a child.”

She said the miscarriage also prompted Bachmann and her husband Marcus to re-evaluate their personal and professional life goals.

“At that moment we didn’t think of ourselves as overly career minded or overly materialistic,” she said, according to Politico. “When we lost that child, it changed us. And it changed us forever.”

“We made a commitment that no matter how many children were brought into our life, we would receive them because we are committed to life,” she added.

Reporters at the event say Bachmann shared it about halfway through her town hall at Winthrop University on Wednesday night. The miscarriage story is not one that Bachmann has shared much and Peter Hamby from CNN reports that “Even some of Bachmann’s staffers were caught by surprise when she talked about the miscarriage and had not heard [the] story before.”

You can see pictures and videos of the event at Right Wing News, courtesy of John Hawkins. I really appreciate that John has been broadly supportive of Michele, because he is a major figure in the conservative blogosphere.

You can also find out more about Michele Bachmann from interviews, campaign speeches and speeches in the legislature.