A Devastating loss in Massachusetts

Dear Friend of WCF,

It is with deep sadness that I report to you that Attorney General Martha Coakley, a WCF-endorsed candidate, did not win tonight's special election for the Massachusetts Senate seat.

Coakley's loss means we won't see the first female Senator elected from Massachusetts, and we won't bring the number of women in the Senate to an all-time high of 18.

But I'm not only disappointed that we won't see a historic victory for women tonight. I'm also deeply fearful of how women's health will be affected by the health care bill. Coakley not only promised to keep health care reform moving forward, but also to reject legislation that would reduce women's reproductive health choices.

The outright attacks against women's health in Congress have served as a prime example of why we need more women in government. And without Coakley's key vote in the Senate, I fear that the final health care bill could serve as an even more detrimental example.

However, even in the face of these serious consequences, I have to say this: Even when a woman runs and loses, we still win. 50 percent fewer women consider running for office then men. Unless we have an equal number of female candidates running all across the country, this statistic will remain bleak.

And to our candidates who won't succeed in being elected, we say: Run again. We still need your skills, experience, and unique voices in public office. And we will be there to support you - just like we'll be there to support Martha if she runs for office again. We sure hope she does.

Will you send her a message of support?

We want to thank her for running, tell her she can count on our support in the future, and encourage her to run for office again.

Thank you, Martha, for your incredible service as Attorney General and having the bravery to run for Senate. Because of you, young women have another example of a strong female leader.

Warm Regards,

Siobhan "Sam" Bennett, President/CEO Women's Campaign Forum