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Harris makes galvanizing pitch to sorority sisters on voting rights, abortion ahead of midterms

Vice President Harris made a galvanizing pitch to thousands of her sorority sisters in Florida on Thursday, encouraging them to take action ahead of the critical midterm races in November.

“We need two additional United States senators to protect voting rights. We need two additional United States senators to protect a woman’s right to make decisions about her own body,” Harris said to applause while speaking at the Alpha Kappa Alpha (AKA) Sorority’s 70th Boule in Orlando. “And we need to elect people who will defend these rights up and down the ballot — from district attorneys to state attorneys general to local sheriffs to governors.”

“And to make this happen, let us do what we do best: We build coalitions. We know how to do that. We got the meanest, baddest phone trees in the world,” she said, according to a transcript of her remarks. “We know how to network. We are fueled in the deeply held belief that we all have so much more in common than what separates us.”

“So, let’s do the kind of work that we have done, because we do it so well, and continue to activate and organize our communities,” she continued. “Let’s continue to be on the front lines of the greatest movement for progress in our country.”

The remarks came amid a wide-ranging address Harris delivered at the event on Thursday that spanned issues like gun safety and voter suppression. She also boasted progress made in various areas since assuming office, including policing, maternal health, the expanded Child Tax Credit, as well as an effort by the Biden administration to combat racial bias in home appraisals.

According to local NBC-affiliate WESH 4, more than 12,000 members of the sorority took part in the event in person, and roughly as many tuned in online.

The event arrives just months before the midterm elections in November, when Democrats will try to hold onto their narrow majority in Congress.

Though the AKA does not endorse political candidates, women in the organization, which boasts of having roughly 300,000 members on its website, mobilized in their individual capacities to support Harris in her 2020 campaign to become the nation’s first Black, Asian American and female vice president.

In her remarks on Thursday, Harris credited those efforts with helping secure her and President Biden’s election win two years ago.

“Our sorority registered more than 250,000 people to vote. Our sorority teamed up with our Divine Nine sisters and strolled to the polls — indeed — and with the entire Divine Nine to combat voter suppression,” she said. “And I will never forget how, during those long days, you turned out for almost every rally and campaign event.”

“So, in 2020, just as a most recent example, you not only showed up for President Biden and me, you showed up for America. And together, we were joined in our fight for progress, which is part of our legacy,” she said.

“And so much of what we have fought for is on the line again,” the vice president added. “And so, we know what we need to do.”

Source: The Hill

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