Statement of Eleanor Smeal, President of Feminist Majority
On International Women’s Day and during the 50th Anniversary of the Selma March for Voting Rights, the Feminist Majority urges U.S. Representative Donna Edwards (D-MD) to make history and to seek retiring Senator Barbara Mikulski’s seat.
Senator Mikulski is a trailblazer who fights for women’s rights, civil rights, human rights and working people. She has made history as the longest-serving woman in Congress and the first woman to win a U.S. Senate seat in her own right. As the dean of women Senators, her leadership time and time again has led to gains for women’s rights, most recently the Well Women’s package of benefits in the Affordable Care Act.
Congresswoman Donna Edwards, in the Mikulski tradition, is a trailblazer and a fighter for women’s rights, civil rights, human rights and working people. Edwards, a lawyer and community activist, was the first African American women to be elected to Congress from Maryland. The Feminist Majority has worked with Donna Edwards for some 20 years long before she was elected to Congress. We worked closely with her when she was founder and executive director of the National Network to End Domestic Violence. Together we worked successfully to pass the Domestic Violence Offender Gun Ban Amendment in 1996. In all of these years of working with Donna Edwards, we know of her dedication to public service, social progressive change, women’s rights and the rights of all people. We are confident Donna Edwards in the Senate will continue to make history for women’s rights and civil rights.