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Congressional Challenger Becker Blasts Hayworth at Somers Rally

SOMERS, N.Y. - Democratic Candidate for the 19th Congressional District Dr. Richard Becker called his press conference in Somers on Monday afternoon, “a rallying cry against the new Republican war on women." He added, "This is March 5, the beginning of Women’s History Month. We’ve come a long way, but the stakes are high and the needs are great.”

When incumbent Representative Nan Hayworth campaigned for office, Becker said, she professed to be pro-choice. Yet once she got to Washington, “a funny thing happened,” he said. Suddenly there were many conditions attached, so her stance, said Becker, is now, “I’m pro-choice unless…”

In his remarks, Becker condemned Hayworth for supporting Bill H.R.358. He called it “the Let Women Die Act” and said, “Hayworth’s vote would have let doctors deny women life-saving reproductive care if the doctor personally didn’t want to provide it. I’m a doctor too. We swore an oath to ‘first, do no harm,’ which is why I would never turn away a patient who was seriously ill.”

Becker suggested that the Republican Party is trying to block women’s access to contraception and defined Bill H.R.358 as “a direct assault on choice.” He concluded by saying “We need a leader and problem solver who will stand up for my daughter and for yours.”

In a brief statement following Becker’s speech, Jordan Beberman, a 20-year-old Pace University student, said, “I want to live in a society which respects all women’s right to make fundamental decisions about their own lives, not one where women’s concerns are not taken seriously. Nan Hayworth’s votes say loud and clear that she does not share that belief.”

Among the audience of roughly two dozen supporters were men and women of all ages from various parts of the county. Frank and Yolanda Taormina from Peekskill said, “Hayworth doesn’t serve the interests of women. We have two granddaughters, so we care about women’s health issues.”

Zara Jackson of Somers' Heritage Hills said, “I think it’s imperative that women react to anti-women’s issues, anti-birth control and the degradation of women. Our representative is not a representative of her gender.”

John McBridge of Croton added, “I’m the number one volunteer in Becker’s campaign. Dr. Hayworth has abandoned women’s issues and the most troubling thing is that she voted for H.R.358.”

Congressmember Hayworth's office was unavailable for comment by press time.

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