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Planned Parenthood Action Fund, NARAL Pro-Choice America PAC Endorse Primary Challenger Connie Saltonstall in Michigan’s 1st Congressional District

The Planned Parenthood Action Fund, the advocacy and political arm of Planned Parenthood Federation of America, and NARAL Pro-Choice America PAC today announced their respective endorsements of Connie Saltonstall, who is challenging anti-choice incumbent Rep. Bart Stupak in the Democratic primary in Michigan’s 1st Congressional District.

“The Planned Parenthood Action Fund is proud to endorse Connie Saltonstall for U.S. representative,” said Cecile Richards, president of the Planned Parenthood Action Fund. “Connie is a passionate advocate for women and their reproductive rights and has a strong record of promoting and protecting women’s health.”

“We are proud to put the support of our PAC behind Connie Saltonstall in this pivotal primary race,” said Nancy Keenan, president of NARAL Pro-Choice America. “The voters in Michigan’s 1st District are looking for an alternative to Bart Stupak. For years, he has attacked women’s freedom and privacy and, for the last several months, seized the national spotlight as he held health care reform hostage to his anti-choice political views. The clock is ticking on Mr. Stupak’s ‘15 minutes of fame.’ We will work to put an end to Mr. Stupak’s divisiveness and replace him with a leader like Connie, who represents Michigan’s mainstream values.”

Saltonstall, who is a mediator and board member of Northern Community Mediation, serves as board president of Hospice of Northwest Michigan and recently completed a three-year term on the Charlevoix County Commission on Aging. In 2008, Saltonstall ran for Michigan state representative in the 105th District. In 2006, she served as Charlevoix County commissioner.

As a U.S. representative, Saltonstall will work to improve access to quality health care for women, support and protect a woman's right to choose, strengthen comprehensive sex education to keep our young people healthy and safe, and invest in prevention programs, including family planning services and breast cancer screenings.

“Clearly it’s time for change in Michigan’s 1st Congressional District,” said Sarah Scranton, executive director of Planned Parenthood Advocates of Michigan. “Michigan voters deserve a representative like Connie Saltonstall who will put their commonsense health care needs ahead of ideology and politics.”

“Connie Saltonstall is a champion for women, women’s health and choice who will be an active proponent for the women and families of Michigan. She will work to ensure that women’s health is a priority on the congressional agenda,” said Richards. 

Saltonstall is running against Rep. Bart Stupak, an anti-choice representative, who drew the ire of women over his attempts to restrict individuals from using their own money to buy health insurance that included abortion coverage. During the health care debate, Rep. Stupak continuously tried to block health care reform unless the Stupak abortion coverage ban was adopted. Fortunately, Rep. Stupak failed in his attempt to insert the Stupak abortion coverage ban in the final health care reform bill. 

The primary election will be held on August 3.