Weeks before Democratic Party delegates meet to endorse candidates for statewide office, EMILY’s List, a preeminent national abortion rights group that supports Democratic women who are running for office, Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey has backed in her campaign for governor.
The group, which has backed Healey in his past campaigns for attorney general, underscored its support for the ROE Act, which enshrined the right to abortion in state law, amid a ruling impending Supreme Court decision that could overturn the landmark abortion case.
“Healey is the pro-choice leader Massachusetts needs, and EMILY’s List is thrilled to announce our support for her campaign to become the state’s next governor,” the EMILY List Chairman said. EMILY, Laphonza Butler, in a statement.
EMILY’s list has great national influence. In the last election cycle alone, the group’s affiliated super PAC, Women Vote!, spent nearly $50 million on candidates nationwide.
Healey is leading his main opponent, State Senator Sonia Chang-Díaz, in fundraising, his massive $4.9 million war chest exceeding the senator’s $353,143 in cash.
Healey said in a statement that she was “honoured to receive their endorsement.”
“With Roe under threat, we need to elect more Democratic women across the country who will champion access to safe and legal abortion,” she said.
The endorsement comes on the heels of another major national abortion rights group endorsing Healey. When NARAL Pro-Choice America backed the attorney general earlier this year, Chang-Díaz’s campaign pushed back and said the senator had not been contacted by NARAL.
Chang-Díaz’s campaign was pushed back again on Thursday, calling the process “frustrating” and accusing EMILY’s slate of neglecting the Jamaica Plains Democrat, who is the only person of color in the race.
A campaign spokeswoman told The Globe that the senator was not interviewed by EMILY’s List as part of their endorsement process.
“The feminist movement has a long history of erasing and excluding women of color – it is inexcusable to repeat those same mistakes of the past,” spokeswoman Kaitlyn Solares said in a statement. “This endorsement will have little impact on the race, since the establishment money has been with the attorney general from the start. But where it does matter is for the women’s movement.
A spokesperson for EMILY’s List did not respond to requests for comment regarding the charge, instead providing a statement that Healey “will fight to protect the rights of the people of Massachusetts – including access to abortion – and EMILY’s List is proud to support her campaign.”