Sista to Watch: U.S. Senate Candidates Edition

WEBSITE_Sista_To_Watch-_Edwards.png WEBSITE_Sista_To_Watch-_Harris.png

Donna Edwards’ path to the Maryland Senate primary has been one of an “unbought and 
unbossed” leader.

Before entering elected office, Rep. Donna Edwards co-founded the National Network to End Domestic Violence and pushed for the successful passage of the Violence Against Women Act of 1994. Once in Congress, Rep. Edwards’ first act was to add Maryland to the Afterschool Suppers Program, ensuring thousands of low-income students had access to nutritious suppers. She has stood up to the National Rifle Association to pass the Domestic Violence Offender Gun Ban. She has been a staunch advocate for equal pay for equal work, women’s reproductive rights and preserving the social safety net.

As a mother who raised her son on her own while putting herself through law school and making the tough day to day decisions about how to put food on the table and pay for child care, Rep. Edwards’ record of championing issues to Black women, their families and communities comes from the personal experience of having been there.

Her commitment to expanding the leadership pipeline for Black women was evident when she served on the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee’s Recruitment Committee for the 2012 cycle where we saw a remarkable number of Black women run for Congress that year. Diverse voices in the halls of government will make better decisions for our nation. Adding Donna Edwards to the U.S. Senate will help make sure that voices are heard, as she will be the first Black woman since the departure of Carol Mosley Braun in 1998 to serve in the body.

About Donna Edwards
Congresswoman Donna F. Edwards represents Maryland’s 4th Congressional District, comprising portions of Prince George’s and Anne Arundel Counties. She was sworn in after a special election to become a member of the U.S. House of Representatives in the 110th Congress in June 2008, becoming the first African American woman to represent Maryland in Congress.

Congresswoman Edwards has enjoyed a diverse career as a nonprofit public interest advocate and in the private sector on NASA’s Spacelab project. In 1994, as co-founder and executive director of the National Network to End Domestic Violence, she led the effort to pass the Violence Against Women Act that was signed into law by President Clinton.

Since being sworn in, Congresswoman Edwards has secured a number of legislative accomplishments to improve the lives of working families in her Congressional District and around the country. During the health care debate, Congresswoman Edwards secured a provision that holds insurance companies accountable for unjustifiable rate increases.

Congresswoman Edwards’ legislative work continues to focus on creating jobs, growing the economy, and increasing opportunity for hardworking families. She introduced legislation to expand research and development, domestic manufacturing, and infrastructure spending; increase high school graduation rates; renew Pell Grant eligibility for incarcerated individuals; 
reduce opioid overdose; and ensure quality, affordable child care. She has championed efforts to protect and strengthen Social Security and Medicare, defend women’s rights and expand economic opportunity for women, raise awareness of domestic violence, and get unlimited money out of politics. She was the first Member of the House to introduce and champion a constitutional amendment to overturn the Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision.

In the 114th Congress, Congresswoman Edwards serves:

On the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee where she sits on:

  • The Subcommittee on Highways and Transit
  • The Subcommittee on Water Resources and Environment
  • The Subcommittee on Economic Development, Public Buildings, and Emergency Management

On the Science, Space, and Technology Committee where she sits on:

  • The Subcommittee on Space - Ranking Member
  • The Subcommittee on Environment

She was also selected by Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi (CA-12) to serve as co-chair of theSteering and Policy Committee and the chairwoman of the Democracy For All Task Force: Restoring People-Powered Politics.

Rep. Edwards completed undergraduate studies at Wake Forest University and received her Juris Doctor from the University of New Hampshire School of Law. She is the proud mother of one son.


When the powers-that-be told her she couldn’t, she did.

Kamala Harris has proven to the naysayers that a strong commitment to social justice and being an effective prosecutor can go hand in hand. By addressing criminal justice from an economic lens through attempting to reduce temptation and access for criminals by improving economic opportunity, Harris effectively takes the long view of how to improve the communities of the most vulnerable. Her “unbought and unbossed” belief that a crime against any of us is a crime against all of us will be a valuable addition to the United States Senate.

Attorney General Harris’ constant work to increase gun control while aggressively prosecuting gun crimes, reduce recidivism and fight domestic violence has given her a winning record of felony convictions for the people of the state of California and made communities across the state safer.

Harris acknowledges that though she is the first woman, African American and South Asian to serve as Attorney General in California and will likely be the first African American and South Asian to represent California in the U.S. Senate, she is committed to ensuring that she is not the last.

To have a leader in the U.S. Senate who is dedicated to addressing the link between poverty and criminal activity will ensure that the vulnerable and voiceless will have a champion in their corner.

About Kamala Harris
On January 3, 2011, Kamala D. Harris was sworn in as the 32nd Attorney General of the State of California. On November 4, 2014 she was re-elected to a second term in office. She is the first woman, the first African American, and the first South Asian to hold the office in the history of California.

As chief law enforcement officer for the state, Attorney General Harris has focused on combating transnational gangs that are trafficking guns, drugs, and human beings throughout California. She has fought to reduce truancy among California’s elementary school students and ensure that every 
California child can exercise their constitutional right to an education. Attorney General Harris has worked to increase the adoption of technology and data-driven policing to assist law enforcement in the efficient investigation and prosecution of crime, and has traveled to every region of California to expand partnerships with local law enforcement. And she established the California Department of Justice Division of Recidivism Reduction and Re-entry to reduce crime by getting offenders back on track to 
productive, law-abiding lives.

As chief lawyer for the people of California, Attorney General Harris has led a bold response to the state’s foreclosure crisis. She expanded prosecutions of mortgage-related fraud and crime by establishing a multidivisional Mortgage Fraud Strike Force. On behalf of California homeowners, she secured more than $18 billion from the nation’s banks as part of the recent National Mortgage Settlement, including $12 billion in principal reductions. To restore transparency and fairness to the mortgage and foreclosure system, she wrote the nation’s most comprehensive package of foreclosure reforms—the California Homeowner Bill of Rights—and fought successfully for its passage through the California Legislature and saw it signed into law.

Attorney General Harris has aggressively defended the rights of consumers. She has forged innovative agreements with the technology industry to improve privacy protections and strengthen online safety for consumers across the country and has established new prosecutorial teams dedicated to fighting piracy and crimes committed online. She has also fought to preserve California’s natural resources, ensure marriage equality for all Californians, and defend the Affordable Care Act.

A career prosecutor, Attorney General Harris served two terms as District Attorney of San Francisco. Defeating a two-term incumbent, she was first elected DA in 2003, and was overwhelmingly elected to a second term in November 2007.

Attorney General Harris began her career in the Alameda County District Attorney’s Office, where she specialized in prosecuting child sexual assault cases. In 1998, she joined the San Francisco District Attorney’s Office, where she led the Career Criminal Unit. She also served as the head of the San Francisco City Attorney’s Division on Children and Families.

Born in Oakland, California, Attorney General Harris is a graduate of Howard University, America’s oldest historically black university. She received her law degree from the University of California, Hastings College of the Law. Attorney General Harris is married to Doug Emhoff and is the author of the 
book Smart on Crime: A Career Prosecutor's Plan to Make Us Safer.