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EMILY's List to target Collins over stance on women's issues

WASHINGTON – EMILY's List, a political group that promotes women in politics, announced Thursday that it will target Rep. Chris Collins, a Clarence Republican, in the November 2018 election.

“Women voters are furious at his shameful lack of courage and leadership – especially when it comes to protecting the safety and well-being of their families," said Stephanie Schriock, president of EMILY’s List.

She noted that Collins voted for the Republican health care bill that would kick 23 million Americans – including thousands of New Yorkers – off their insurance.

"He has repeatedly voted to defund Planned Parenthood and voted to undermine equal pay protections for women," Schriock added. "On top of all of this, Collins is under an ethics investigation over his shady business dealings.”

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Christopher M. Grant, Collins' political adviser, did not seem all that troubled by the EMILY's List announcement.

He tried to tie the group's announcement to New York Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi of California.

"It's no surprise that Andrew Cuomo and Nancy Pelosi are sending in their partisan attack machine to prop up their handpicked candidate," Grant said. "Voters in NY-27 are sick and tired of their failed policies and want leaders focused on the issues, not cheap political games."

EMILY's List is focusing on 50 Republican lawmakers nationwide, and that could mean a funding boost for their opponents.

Erin Cole, a veteran and longtime state and federal official, is the only Democrat so far to announce a challenge to Collins.

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The women's group also would concentrate on four other Republican lawmakers from New York: Rep. John Katko of Camillus, Rep. Elise Stefanek of Willsboro, Rep. John Faso of Kinderhook and Rep. Lee Zeldin of Shirley.

The group opted not to target Rep. Tom Reed, R-Corning, whose district includes Cattaraugus and Chautauqua counties.

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