Council Speaker Mark-Viverito, Manhattan Borough President Brewer, and Pro-Choice Advocacy Groups Blast AG Candidate John Cahill’s Record on Reproductive Health Issues
May 12, 2014- NEW YORK, NY – New York City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito and Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer today joined leading pro-choice advocacy groups from around New York in denouncing attorney general candidate John Cahill’s record on women’s reproductive health issues.
The elected officials and advocacy groups – which included NOW-NYC, NOW-NYS, NARAL Pro-Choice New York, and Westchester Coalition for Legal Abortion Choice Matters – blasted Cahill’s recent comment on Fred Dicker’s radio show that he doesn’t believe the reproductive healthcare provision of the Women’s Equality Act is “necessary.”
“John Cahill’s opposition to the Women’s Equality Act is a glaring example of why he doesn’t represent the values of New Yorkers,” said NYC Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito. “Women in this state need an attorney general who will aggressively fight for reproductive health rights – something Cahill is clearly incapable of doing.”
Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer said, “Once again, it appears that the New York State GOP is indulging in a kind of nostalgia with a ticket that is shaping up to be all-male–and all-wrong for New York.”
“At a time when we are facing more restrictions on access to reproductive healthcare than ever before, we need a defender of our rights, a real advocate who will be there for us unequivocally,” said Sonia Ossorio, president of NOW-NYC. “It’s clear we can’t count on John Cahill, who thinks that strengthening our right to reproductive freedom is unnecessary.”
His experience working on reproductive healthcare issues extends to his tenure as chief of staff to Republican Governor George Pataki, during which time, the administration vetoed legislation to help New York women access the morning-after pill and nominated a CUNY trustee who opposed abortion, contraception and same-sex marriage.
NOW-NYS President Zenaida Mendez said, “Actions speak louder than words, and John Cahill’s anti-choice and anti-women record in the Pataki Administration speaks volumes. New York State voters, and women in particular, should dismiss his candidacy out of hand.”
“John Cahill does not represent the ideals and values that define New Yorkers. It’s baffling that someone running for attorney general in New York state does not think our state law should be aligned with Roe v. Wade,” said NARAL Pro-Choice New York President Andrea Miller. “Voters just won’t accept that Cahill is so unconcerned with the health and rights of women that he would not use the office of attorney general to protect access to reproductive health care. The differences with Attorney General Schneiderman could not be starker.”
Catherine Lederer-Plaskett, President of WCLA – Choice Matters, stated, “New York State’s present legislation does not give women the full constitutionally recognized protection of Roe v. Wade and it does not incorporate the medical advances that have been made in reproductive health over the last 44 years. New York women deserve reproductive legislation that does both, and the vast majority of New Yorkers agree. But not John Cahill, candidate for the highest law enforcement office in the state. Cahill thinks it is unnecessary to update our legislation so that New York women have the best modern medical advances available. The fact that John Cahill doesn’t care about what is in the best interest of 51% of the state population means he doesn’t deserve to hold office in New York.”
Press Contact: Jean Bucaria, 212-627-9895 (o), 917-328-5543(m), firstname.lastname@example.org