That old phrase "the company you keep" has been on my mind lately. A few weeks ago, EMILY's List launched a campaign to highlight the extremist agenda of Sarah Palin and her candidates. We asked for women's perspectives, and boy, did we get it. Along with the quarter of a million people who watched our video, we received some wonderful, touching, inspiring and to-the-point letters and emails:
"I support women candidates, but not ones that speak against women's rights!" - Carolyn, MO
"I am a mamma grizzly and Palin's ultra-conservative stances endanger my family's freedom and America's future." - Cheryl, MD
These women are on my mind in California today. Because in California right now, the company you keep says a lot about you. Against progressive stalwart Barbara Boxer stands Carly Fiorina, running on failure, and asking to be rewarded with a seat in the US Senate. Once there, though, she says, she won't focus on job creation. She won't take a hard look at energy independence and offshore drilling, which, she tells voters, is "very safe" - even after the BP disaster. She will try to overturn Roe v. Wade, and criminalize doctors.
And why should we be surprised? Since Day 1, Fiorina's been running with the embrace of Sarah Palin. She's turned to the radical right whenever possible; courting the Tea Party, and refusing to run to the center after primary day, which many expected. Sarah Palin's agenda - with its backwards-looking policies and its appeal to extremism - is Carly's agenda, too.
Carly's a drill, baby, drill, kind of candidate - just like Sarah!
Carly talks about her own choices, but would take away the right to choose from others - just like Sarah!
Carly believes in less regulation for Wall Street and less assistance for Main Street - just like Sarah!
The company you keep speaks volumes. Women - and men! - across the country, some of them highlighted in our new video - are rejecting Sarah Palin's extremist candidates, like Carly Fiorina, and their out-of-step agenda.
And when they talk about their families, their need for health insurance, their efforts to protect the environment, and make wise choices, what does Sarah say to them?
Sarah Palin calls them radical. A "cackle of rads," no less.
But the men and women who have said "Sarah doesn't speak for me" know what's really radical: standing with Big Oil and against common sense financial reform. Talking tough about the constitution when it turns out you just want to get rid of the parts you don't like. Taking away women's right to make their own health care choices.
Now that's radical. The company you keep says everything. Visit www.sarahdoesntspeakforme.com to learn more about Carly Fiorina, Sarah Palin, and their radical, extremist agenda. Pledge to vote and join Team EMILY to help bring voters to the polls this November.
Watch our new video:
Stephanie Schriock is the President of EMILY's List.