Why I Voted for Melanie D’Arrigo

I am a mother. I am an educator. I am a taxpayer. For these reasons, I am compelled to write in support of Melanie D’Arrigo, a Democrat running for the NY-District 3 seat in Congress.

A year ago, I met Melanie in a local bookstore in Port Washington. A mutual friend introduced us. She was pushing a stroller with one hand and guiding her other children to the kids’ section of the store to buy a birthday gift.

There are many people who when challenged with juggling the diaper bag, managing multiple human beings with whom they are responsible, and having to engage with a perfect stranger, would be irritated engaging in the pleasantries.

But with a welcoming smile and a genuine desire to connect, Melanie paused, connected, and engaged, while also carefully minding her children.

When Melanie announced that she was running for office, I was confident that she would be the woman we need to represent our corner of the country. Not only is she a confident and loving mother, but she is also intelligent and resourceful.

When speaking to Melanie about anything, she is so knowledgeable; and when she doesn’t know something, she acknowledges it and circles back with the answer to the question or the problem because she researched it. And then she will educate you with all of the sides of the matter.

When asking Melanie what she stands for, she doesn’t just tell you what she thinks will get her elected. She stands for what she truly believes in. And her values are what any mother would want for her community:

Melanie wants to end gun violence. She wants common-sense gun safety laws to keep our kids and communities safe. We should not fear for our children’s lives when we send them off to school!

Melanie wants improved education. This includes extended public education, pre-k, public colleges, and trade schools. As an educator, I see how much a good education helps the individual and the community. We need to fund our school. This is where equity begins!

Melanie has stated that “what a child learns is just as important as how they learn.” She believes that we must provide funding for culturally relevant curricula, programs that foster social-emotional learning, and increased and updated education on topics critical for children and teens for inclusiveness.

In addition to her commitment to ending gun violence and improving education, Melanie will also fight for the following:

Universal childcare,
Universal family leave,
Ensuring a habitable planet,
Creating a fair tax system,
Financial equality,
Ending workplace discrimination,
Protecting reproductive rights,
Protecting families from domestic violence.

As a woman and a mother, these are all the things that mean the most to me and that I want for my children and for my community. Essentially, we need to ELECT MORE MOMS!!! Melanie is endorsed by Moms in Office, National Organization for Women, and Matriarch, all of which are groups fighting every day to have more “women representing the needs of women in government.”

Most importantly, Melanie is a role model for my daughter and my twin sons. She has taught my children, through her actions, what it means to be a leader and a human being who cares about the needs of other human beings.

I just filled in my absentee ballot and dropped it in the mailbox. I was honored to fill in the circle next to Melanie D’Arrigo’s name. I hope you will consider doing the same.

Jessica Harnden
Port Washington

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