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Abortion Rights Group Florida’s Ruth’s List endorsed representatives from South Florida. Patricia Hawkins-Williams and Dotie Joseph for re-election to Florida House.

The organization, which recruits, trains and supports Sunshine State candidates who support abortion rights, announced the endorsements Tuesday.

“We are thrilled to lend our support to these remarkable women leaders,” said Ruth’s List Florida Vice President of Policy and Programs. Kayla van Wieringen said in a statement.

“These seats are a top priority for our organization and many other groups across the state. Given the The recent Supreme Court decision to overturn Roe v. wadeit is more crucial than ever that we elect strong Democratic leaders like Dotie and Patricia at the state level.

For Joseph, a North Miami Democrat who won the job by a wide margin in 2018 and won his re-election hands down two years later, the endorsement of Ruth’s List became an election year tradition. This year’s endorsement marks the third consecutive election in which the organization has backed her.

For Hawkins-Williams, now seeking his fourth and final term at the Statehouse, approval this year comes with an asterisk.

Florida’s Ruth’s List originally approved Hawkins-Williams in the 2020 election cycle, along with 17 other state representatives and two senators. But later canceled this endorsement after the Pompano Beach representative joined four other House Democrats that year –James Bush 3, Kim Daniels, Al Jacquet and Anika Omphroy – in vote for a bill require minors to obtain parental consent before undergoing an abortion.

Critics argued the measure (SB 404), that the governor Ron DeSantis signed on June 30, 2020, was extremely burdensome for children who may not have had healthy relationships with their parents.

The law provides exceptions in cases where judges grant a waiver, but many have argued that this step is unrealistic for many, especially those who have experienced trauma.

Former CEO of Ruth’s List in Florida Pam Goodman said at the time that his organization was “deeply disappointed” with Hawkins-Williams’ vote and could “no longer support his candidacy.”

It seems the band have since reversed that stance.

This year, Joseph faces two primary challengers in House District 108, which covers much of North Miami and the Miami Shores: the former State Representative. Roy Hardemon, who has repeatedly raced against Joseph since she knocked him down in 2018; and former North Miami City Clerk Michel Etiennewho bought $60,000 worth of radio ads on his first day of campaigning last month.

Hawkins-Williams, meanwhile, dropped out of her Senate bid last month to run instead for the 98 House District remapping. After the redistricting, this area resembles the district of Broward County which it represented for three terms.

She faces a Democratic opponent carmen jonesappointed member of Pompano Beach Housing Authority who ran unsuccessfully in 2014 and 2020 for the Pompano Beach Municipal Commission.

The winners of the two primary races will come straight to power; no contest features a GOP candidate.

The primary election takes place on August 23.


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