Maryland Democrat Kathleen Matthews on Thursday received an endorsement from EMILY's List, a national group which has made it its mission to support Democratic women candidates.
In a statement, EMILY's List President Stephanie Schriock said that in Matthews the group sees an opportunity to elect the first woman to Congress from Maryland's 8th District, which is being vacated by Rep. Chris Van Hollen as he seeks the state's open Senate seat. “Kathleen Matthews is a lifelong advocate for women and families and a dynamic leader who will fight for progressive change in Congress,” she said. “As a news anchor at WJLA-TV, she put a spotlight on issues affecting women and families — jobs, education, health care, and equality in the workplace — and as an executive, she spearheaded efforts to advance women's careers and women-owned businesses around the world."
Matthews said the group's support — which allows her to access its nationwide list of donors — added "tremendous momentum" for her campaign, nearly six months out from the April primary.
“I have long admired EMILY’s List and the women candidates they have promoted, like Maryland Senator Barbara Mikulski, who was the first woman the organization helped elect in 1986," Matthews said in a statement. "I share their values of putting women and families first and will fight to protect a woman’s right to choose, ensure equal pay for equal work, and protect Planned Parenthood funding."
An endorsement from EMILY's List offers a significant boost to Matthews' progressive credentials, as the former Marriott executive who is married to MSNBC newsman Chris Matthews seeks to define herself in large field of mostly established Democratic candidates running for the Washington, D.C., area seat.
Matthews is the ninth House candidate to receive an endorsement from Emily's List, including candidates such as Monica Vernon in Iowa, who is challenging Rep. Rod Blum, and Annette Taddeo in Florida, who is challenging freshman Rep. Carlos Curbelo.
Already in Maryland, the group has endorsed Rep. Donna Edwards, who is running against Van Hollen for the Senate seat.