News & Events

MNA endorses Elizabeth Warren for U.S. Senate

From the Massachusetts Nurse Newsletter
October/November 2011 Edition

Elizabeth Warren is welcomed by MNA President Donna Kelly-Williams.

Just days after Elizabeth Warren announced the establishment of an exploratory committee for her U.S. Senate run in Massachusetts, the MNA unanimously endorsed her candidacy at its August Board of Directors meeting.

The MNA was the first labor union to endorse Warren, and its 23,000 nurse members combined with 150,000 additional NNU members, provided the Senate candidate with strong motivation to enter the race.

“Her dedication to the nation’s middle class,” said Donna Kelly-Williams, RN and president of the MNA, “reflects one of the MNA’s key goals: restoring a basic standard of living for working people by creating financial remedies that hold Wall Street accountable while protecting those who live and work on Main Street.”

The MNA and NNU recognized early on that their “Main Street Contract” campaign was focused on the same issues that Warren has been dedicated to during her work as a Harvard professor, bankruptcy attorney and as an advisor to President Obama and Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner. These issues include:

  • Providing jobs at living wages for everyone
  • Creating a secure retirement system that allows everyone to live out their lives with dignity
  • Establishing a just taxation system where corporations and the wealthy pay their fair share

“For too long now we have seen the results of Wall Street controlling the economy,” said Karen Higgins, RN and co-president of the NNU. “It is time for the ‘Main Street’ values of financial equality and fairness to take precedence, and Elizabeth Warren is the person to lead us in that direction. She will go to Washington, D.C. not to serve the interests of Wall Street, but to serve the interests of working people in Massachusetts and across America.”

Warren has spent years fighting for working-class families and highlighting the need for financial reform and meaningful consumer protection. Following the financial crisis of 2008, she became the chair of the Congressional Oversight Panel, which was created to oversee the U.S. banking bailout. Warren was also a long-time advocate for the creation of a new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and helped establish it following the passage of the Dodd-Frank Act.

Following the union’s endorsement, Warren attended the MNA’s annual convention where she thanked members for both their endorsement and support.

The next evening, at a highly publicized fund-raising event, Warren had MNA member Shannon Sherman, an RN from Cape Cod Hospital, provide the night’s opening remarks. “[Elizabeth Warren] is one of the smartest, warmest, most authentic women I have ever encountered,” said Sherman, “and she is truly dedicated to helping middle class Americans get on solid financial ground again.”

Sherman described how her father’s retirement dissolved after a long-established New England company faltered and ultimately declared bankruptcy. “Those at the top somehow managed to walk away with their financial futures fully protected,” she said. “Everyone else was left with retirement accounts hovering near zero. I believe that Elizabeth Warren will fight for all middle class Americans.”