To be fair, the “dear” is generally implied these days, not spoken, but it is definitely there. It’s a part of the diminishment of women, particularly women of color, by party elders. Because the notion is, eventually, they will tell you when it is your turn. We call B.S.

For the umpteenth time today, a smart, qualified woman, in this case an elected State House member, told us of being admonished by county party leaders for having political will and ambition, for wanting to serve in a majority in Congress instead of toiling away in the swamp that is Tallahassee, hoping to limit the damage the ruling minority does each and every year to Florida Families.

To be clear, this is not a Democratic problem. The Duval Republican apparatus famously ran a dude against a brilliant, beloved Republican woman for Mayor in 2011, effectively handing the election to the Democratic challenger, Alvin Brown. They simply could not wrap their heads around a woman mayor, in THIS century. There are streets in Jacksonville named after some of these men, and I have taken enough long walks with Audrey Moran, that woman candidate, to know that she manages to neither spit nor comment when we pass one. She is a marvel.

Part of why WUFF PAC exists is to work with candidates, to make sure they are filed in the race where they can make the most impact, and build a relationship so that we can strategize with them, if they lose, about what the next race should be. There is abundant research to suggest that most women need to run twice to win. Ideally, we wouldn’t have qualified women facing off against each other when there are other local seats that no Democrat is contesting.

But what’s happening with these party leaders and their “sage advice” isn’t that. They aren’t offering alternatives, they aren’t trying to help, they are trying to control and direct women, which is not their brief. They are required to stay neutral until there is one Democrat in a race, whether that is at the qualifying date or after a primary. So why are they trying to keep qualified women out of these primaries? There are not a lot of flattering answers. Honestly, not one we can think of.

So, add Michele Rayner to your list of candidates to watch.

She won her 2020 election for Florida HD 70 in the Tampa-St. Pete area, served with distinction in 2021, and is now filed for FL CD 13, the seat that Charlie Crist is vacating to run for Governor. If you can make a small monthly donation, either through her campaign or through WUFF PAC, it will make a huge difference to this smart, funny, queer Black woman trying to make some history, and cement the Democratic majority in the House.

Other women we are supporting who have been told by party leaders that it’s not their turn (which is all of them):

Corinna Balderramos Robinson is running in CD 19 against Brian Maskhole (okay, Mast) who famously said his fine for failing to wear a mask on the House Floor was “the best $500 I ever spent.” Sure, dude, but we’re pretty sure Nancy Pelosi found a way to deduct that from your paycheck.

Barbara Sharief, a nurse, business owner, and Broward County Commissioner since 2010 is running in the CD 20 Special Election to replace civil rights legend Alcee Hastings, who died in April. Her primary is November 2, 2021–right around the corner. She could use your help.

Dr. Cindy Banyai defied all predictions but those of her staff by taking the 2020 primary in CD 19 from an establishment Democrat. With a little over 200K in funding, versus the $5Million that was deployed against her, she got nearly 39% of the vote, and moved her District’s Cook rating by a point. Also, this is her opponent, Congressman Byron Donalds, in a My Pillow Guy selfie on the White House lawn on 1.6.21

We never get tired of posting this photo.

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