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NARAL Pro-Choice backs Irwin in Senate race against Hannon

Ethan Irwin, Democratic candidate for New York State

Ethan Irwin, Democratic candidate for New York State Senate in the 6th District, on May 27, 2014. (Credit: James Escher)

NARAL Pro-Choice New York, a political action committee which opposes restrictions on abortion rights, has endorsed Democrat Ethan Irwin in his candidacy against Republican State Sen. Kemp Hannon in the 6th District.

NARAL, which typically endorses Democratic candidates cited Irwin’s efforts to promote women’s health and equality.

“Irwin will not back down in the face of those who wish to deny women the right to make their own reproductive health care decisions,” said Andrea Miller, president of NARAL Pro-Choice New York. “We look forward to the day when residents of the 6th Senate District are appropriately represented by someone who shares their values, including their overwhelming support for a woman’s right to choose.”

Irwin, who also announced the endorsement of 32BJ-SEIU – a labor group that also typically endorses Democrats – said he will vote to pass Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo’s Women’s Equality Act, which would enhance abortion rights.

The bill, which also includes provisions supported by both parties, such as protecting victims of domestic violence, sexual harassment and human trafficking, did not clear the State Senate, which is partially controlled by Republicans.

“For the last two years the women of New York have been denied full equality because of partisan politics in the State Senate,” Irwin said. “As a senator, I will never play political games with something as important as women’s rights.”

Hannon (R-Garden City), first elected to the State Senate in 1989, has been a target for Nassau Democrats in recent years.

The district has 84,746 registered Democrats, 77,036 Republicans and 49,274 voters unaligned with a major party, according to the State Board of Elections.

Update:

From Kelly Cummings, Senate GOP spokeswoman:"Under Republican leadership, the Senate has already passed a comprehensive women's equality agenda that would ensure equal pay for equal work, end human trafficking and afford additional protection to the victims of domestic violence, among other critically important measures. Those measures would be law today if the Democrats in the State Senate and Assembly hadn't held them hostage for an extreme provision that would allow non-doctors to perform an abortion right up until the moment of a baby's birth and put women's health in jeopardy. New Yorkers overwhelmingly oppose approval of that controversial provision."

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