It’s hard to believe, but elections are just around the corner, and the COVID-19 pandemic has been a stark reminder of how much elections matter - from the top of the ticket to the bottom. Electing legislators that will fight for access to reproductive health care and for all the communities that too often face systemic barriers to care has never been more important. That is why Planned Parent Advocates of Arizona is thrilled to announce our first set of 2020 legislative endorsements.
At stake in Arizona; our ability to push back against the radical judicial appointments stemming from the Trump White House and their Congressional allies who have resolved themselves to overturn Roe v. Wade. Currently in Arizona, should Roe be overturned, a 1906 law criminalizing abortion patients and providers with up to 5 years in prison would have no Constitutional backstop to prevent enforcement. Doctors, patients, and advertisers of abortion services would be at risk of arrest and imprisonment. Expanding Medicaid and ensuring affordable health care for all citizens of Arizona should be our priority, and that is what PPAA endorsed candidates will do.
Over the coming weeks we’ll be spotlighting the candidates we’ve endorsed, so you can get to know them and help support their candidacy in the months ahead. Let’s start with Rep. Andres Cano and Rep. Jennifer Jermaine.
Representative Andres Cano - 3rd Legislative District
Andres Cano is a freshman member of the Arizona House of Representatives, representing the 3rd legislative district. Rep. Cano embodies the American story, raised by a single mother, first-generation college graduate, he jumped into public service, serving as Pima County’s youngest ever policy advisor. Six years later, part of the 2018 Arizonan blue wave, Cano was elected to the House of Representatives as the youngest LGBT member of the Arizona legislature, where he serves on the House Committee on Way and Means, and Committee on Natural Resources, Energy and Water.
Rep. Cano fervently opposed H.B. 2759, the bill that would have allotted millions of taxpayer dollars to an anti-abortion group under the guise of “family planning” – restricting access to high quality, unbiased health care for pregnant people. In 2016, Cano also became an inaugural fellow of the Human Rights Campaign's HIV360 Fellowship Program as well as being named the Center for the Future of Arizona's 'Emerging Leader,' of which Cano was the youngest, and first-ever Latino award recipient. In his first term, Rep. Cano was a co-sponsor of H.B. 2707, outlining the banning of conversion therapy in Arizona, and a co-sponsor of H.B. 2277, increasing sex education courses in public school curriculums.
Representative Jennifer Jermaine - 18th Legislative District
Jennifer Jermaine is a freshman member of the Arizona House of Representatives, representing the 18th legislative district. Rep. Jermaine has been long dedicated to the restoration and protection of civil rights and liberties for all Arizonans. Before entering the House of Representatives in the 2018 blue wave, Jermaine was the co-founder of Stronger Together Arizona and the We the People Summit, dedicated to bringing ordinary Americans in the process of governance and advocacy. Rep. Jermaine serves on the House Committees on Government, Election Reform, and the Military and Veterans Committee. She serves as Chairwoman of the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls Investigative Committee.
Rep. Jermaine, always a champion of the rights of women and individuals of all genders, was a cosponsor of legislation requiring sexual assault prevention education in Arizona schools, and an outspoken opponent of the bill giving taxpayer funds to an anti-abortion group. During her 2018 campaign, Jermaine stated, “Fear of Roe v. Wade being overturned is being felt from Democrats, Republicans and even religious people who are worried about privacy and religious concerns.”
Representatives Cano and Jermaine have the full confidence of Planned Parenthood Advocates of Arizona, and with the help of the people of Arizona, let’s send them back to Phoenix next year to continue their important work.
Keep an eye on our website and social as we continue to announce our support of reproductive health champions.