The Planned Parent Maine Action Fund has moved in behind Democratic U.S. Representative Mike Michaud’s bid for governor with a promise to spend over $500K in campaigns for upcoming elections.
Protecting women’s health and reproductive rights, primarily access to birth control and abortion, is the purpose behind a political action committee’s unprecedented campaign investment for upcoming gubernatorial and legislative races this year in Maine.
The Planned Parenthood Maine Action Fund PAC promises to spend at least $500K to ensure that Mike Michaud, a Democratic U.S. Representative, wins the upcoming race for state governor in November. The funding will also support the campaigns of a number of other political candidates, most of home are Democrats. The announcement was made Thursday and marks an enormous increase over the $14K the group spent in 2010 and 2012 races combined.
The PAC hopes that the announcement will underscore the importance of having a strong turnout among women voters in November. Both Michaud and independent candidate Eliot Cutler have been emphasizing their pro-abortion stances as well as their positions on other issues that tend to resonate with women voters. The two are battling incumbent governor Republican Paul LePage.
A recent decision by the U.S. Supreme Court that allows corporations to opt out of paying for birth control provided under the Affordable Care Act, and this has PAC Chairwoman Nicole Clegg concerned.
“Women’s health and rights are under attack around the nation. The stakes are high, and now is the time to make a stand,” said Clegg. “Mike has worked with us over the years and is one of our must trusted allies.”
The PAC also plans to endorse nearly two dozen legislative campaigns. Senate minority leader Roger Katz is the only Republican to receive an endorsement by the group in his re-election bid against Democrat Rebecca Cornell du Houx.
Planned Parenthood’s funds will be used for field operations, television spots, and online advertisements.
“The majority is going to be invested in the governors race,” Clegg said.
According to Clegg, Planned Parenthood has been ramping up its efforts in since 2010 when the Tea Party began challenging established trends in 2010, when LePage was elected and the Republicans took control of the Legislature.
“All of a sudden you started to see across the country governors defunding Planned Parenthood and (other) very targeted attacks to our organization,” said Clegg.