Rep. Neal Takes $200k in Campaign Contributions from Pharmaceutical Industry...

Rep. Neal Takes $200k in Campaign Contributions from Pharmaceutical Industry While Constituents Struggle with High Prescription Costs


(Springfield, MA) On June 1, 2018, households across Western Massachusetts’ District One were inundated with a mailing by the American Life Sciences Innovation Council (ALSIC). The mailer announces that Rep. Neal is to be congratulated as a ‘champion of health care innovation.’ ALSIC, a profit-driven special interest group whose priorities include curtailing FDA regulations, ending Medicare Part D rebates, and pushing for more expansive patent rights, has awarded Rep. Neal as its champion because he is exactly that - a champion for special interests and corporate money. 

While Americans struggle to pay for outrageously priced prescriptions, pharmaceutical special interests continue to reward Rep. Neal by showering him with campaign contributions. Over the terms of his office, he has received more than $200,000 from pharmaceutical special interests, and he also cast at least two key votes in their favor (see our white paper). The fact is, our congressional representatives cannot effectively tackle the skyrocketing cost of drugs if they are chained to the special interests of the very industry they are supposed to keep in check. 


Read More

Progressive Democrats of America Endorses Tahirah Amatul-Wadud

Chicopee, Mass. (June 21, 2018) -- Candidate for Congress, Tahirah Amatul-Wadud, has been endorsed by Progressive Democrats of America, a leading national progressive grassroots-driven activism organization.

“We at Progressive Democrats of America are delighted to have endorsed Tahirah Amatul-Wadud, candidate for Congress from the First Congressional District of Massachusetts,” said Russell Freedman, PDA State Coordinator. ”Tahirah is a progressive who understands the needs of the people in the First Congressional District for good jobs. She understands that healthcare is a right not a privilege and must be available to all people. She understands that we must take aggressive action to deal with climate change and criminal justice reform. The First Congressional District needs a progressive champion who is willing to talk to her constituents and represent them in Congress,” stated Freedman.

“Tahirah Amatul-Wadud is a terrific candidate,” Freedman added, “and we urge progressives to join us in helping her campaign and giving her their votes on September 4th.”

Amatul-Wadud has also been endorsed locally by Indivisible National, Williamsburg Indivisible, Franklin County Continuing the Political Revolution, and Rise Up Western Massachusetts Indivisible.

“I am delighted to have been endorsed by Progressive Democrats of America,” said Ms. Amatul-Wadud. “I greatly admire PDA and the people it supports. As I’ve said before, there is an urgent need to protect our rights in the midst of a hostile Trump administration. Organizations like PDA have provided communities with the vital tools necessary to thrive in the face of the challenges we‘re encountering. I’ve also met with families, and I’ve heard their stories throughout my hometown and the district. I am committed to being a representative who is a champion for all of our families, and I am committed to improving our quality of life,” she said.

Tahirah Amatul-Wadud Endorsed By Indivisible National

Chicopee, Mass. (June 6, 2018) -- Candidate for Congress in the First Congressional District, Tahirah Amatul-Wadud, has been endorsed by Indivisible, a leading national progressive grassroots-driven activism organization. “Tahirah’s a first time candidate and deeply rooted community activist. She’s a Springfield based attorney dedicated to fighting for residents of Massachusetts and will be a fierce advocate…” stated the official endorsement announcement. Amatul-Wadud has also been endorsed locally by Williamsburg Indivisible, Franklin County Continuing the Political Revolution, and Rise Up Western Massachusetts Indivisible.


“I am excited to have been endorsed by Indivisible. I have long admired the work of this organization and the communities it supports. There is an urgent need to protect our rights in the face of a hostile Trump  administration and Indivisible has provided communities with every tool necessary to thrive in the face of the challenges we have,” said Ms. Amatul-Wadud. “I’ve met with families. I’ve heard their stories throughout my hometown and the district. I am committed to being a representative who is a champion for all of our families and to improve our quality of life,” she said.


Amatul-Wadud explains the importance of this race, “We are living in one of the most consequential political times of our nation’s history. Because of our campaign, we are already being heard and changing the course of our future. We are restoring hope where, until recently, hope seemed elusive. I am deeply grateful to Indivisible for its confidence in me and for choosing me as a candidate it supports.”

Amatul-Wadud launched her political campaign in December 2017 with three consecutive events in Shelburne Falls, Pittsfield, and Springfield. With the combination of her “unapologetically progressive,” people-centered platform and her unique position as the first African American Muslim woman to seek office in the U.S. House of Representatives, Amatul-Wadud’s candidacy has garnered a considerable amount of national interest and community enthusiasm.

Over the course of her career Amatul-Wadud has received a number of commendations for her service to the Western Massachusetts community. She has advocated before lawmakers in support of agricultural bills, equal pay for women, immigration reform and anti-bigotry resolutions at the district, state, and federal level. In 2018, in collaboration with Springfield Women Organize she received two commendations and was recognized by Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno and Massachusetts House Speaker Robert DeLeo and offered by State Representative Carlos Gonzalez for her dedication and positive community impact in the city of Springfield. This week Amatul-Wadud accepted the Women’s Fund of Western Massachusetts’s LIPPI Alumna Achievement Award for her leadership in the community. 

Tahirah and Sue O'Connell

Tahirah on "The Take with Sue O'Connell" (NECN)

On Wednesday, May 2nd, Tahirah appeared on The Take with Sue O'Connell aired by New England Cable News (NECN) where she talked about how she is excited to be the candidate bringing "people-centered policies" and that she is "unapologetic about centering the needs of our communities and families".


If you missed it, watch the full interview here.


Thanks for watching!

Team Tahirah for Congress

Support Tahirah

Your contributions are helping Tahirah share her progressive vision throughout the vast first congressional district. 

Tahirah Amatul-Wadud is Officially on the Ballot

Candidate for U.S. House of Representatives - 1st District

On Monday, April 30, Tahirah Amatul-Wadud surpassed the 2,000 certified signature requirement and is now officially on the ballot for the U.S. House of Representatives in the first district of Massachusetts!


This campaign is full speed ahead, but Tahirah needs your support. Can you contribute $25 to the campaign today?

Tahirah secures her name on the ballot at the Secretary of the Commonwealth (Springfield)

Tahirah secures her name on the ballot at the Secretary of the Commonwealth (Springfield)

Amatul-Wadud: Rep. Neal’s follow through on Puerto Rican relief is lacking

(Springfield, MA - April 27, 2018) This week’s visit of Mayor Carmen Yulin Cruz of San Juan, Puerto Rico to western Massachusetts is a reminder of the urgent need to prioritize the rebuilding of the devastated island. Invited by Holyoke City Councilor Jossie Valentin and sponsored by Mt. Holyoke College, Mayor Cruz, has described to the public the continued absence of electricity throughout much of Puerto Rico. Along with the recent island-wide blackout, it is clear that Congress has to commit to rebuilding the island’s beleaguered infrastructure and modernizing its electrical grid.


In January, when Rep. Neal traveled to Puerto Rico to inspect disaster recovery efforts following the September 2017 damage from Hurricanes Irma and Maria, he praised the efforts of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (“FEMA”). But last week, Rep. Neal failed to join four other Democratic ranking minority members in signing a letter to FEMA requesting that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers be allowed to extend their mission assignment to restore power beyond the current termination date of May 18, 2018.

Rep. Neal’s Support for Costly Sugar Program Demonstrates Continued Loyalty to Sugar Lobby

(Springfield - May 18, 2018) As evidence of a troubling trend of voting consistent with special interests groups, yesterday Rep. Richard Neal voted against an amendment to the 2018 Farm Bill that would have reformed the federal sugar support program that one think tank called "perhaps the least defensible corporate welfare boondoggle on the federal books.” 

Addressing Questions About Rep. Neal's Seniority

(April 5, 2018 - Springfield, Mass.) Candidate for Congress in the First Congressional District, Tahirah Amatul-Wadud, issued the following statement regarding the seniority of Rep. Richard Neal:

There seems to be some concern in certain quarters about the effect my primary challenge would have on Rep. Richard Neal’s seniority should the Democrats capture the U.S. House in the November election. Let me address these concerns.

Rise Up Mass Indivisible Endorses Amatul-Wadud

Springfield, Massachusetts (April 20, 2018) -- Candidate for Congress in the First Congressional District, Tahirah Amatul-Wadud, has been endorsed by Rise Up Western Massachusetts, an Indivisible Group serving the greater Springfield area.

“Tahirah’s progressive platform, inclusive messaging, and active support of local issues mirrored our group’s priorities and resonated with our members,” Jackie Neiman, co-founder of the Rise Up Western Mass chapter, said of the newly endorsed candidate.

“I am excited to have been chosen by Rise Up Western Mass as its candidate in this important congressional race,” said Ms. Amatul-Wadud. “We deserve a representative who truly cares about our families and our futures. I’ve met with families. I’ve heard their stories throughout my hometown, and the district. I am committed to being a champion for all of our families and improving our quality of life,” she said.

Tahirah Amatul-Wadud Receives Endorsement from Franklin County Continuing the Political Revolution

(March 30, 2018) Springfield, Mass. - Candidate for Congress in the First Congressional District, Tahirah Amatul-Wadud, has been endorsed by Franklin County Continuing the Political Revolution “FCCPR”. 

“Tahirah’s understanding of the issues facing the constituents of CD-1 and her commitment to improving their lives gives me hope that we can be represented much more effectively at the congressional level”, said David Greenberg, a member of both CPR’s Endorsement Committee and Coordinating Committee.

“It is an honor to have been chosen by FCCPR as its candidate in this most important congressional race”, said Ms. Amatul-Wadud. “We deserve a representative who truly cares about our families and our futures. I’ve met with families. I’ve heard their stories. I will advocate to improve our quality of life,” she said. “We are living in one of the most consequential political times of our nation’s history. Because of our campaign, we are already being heard and changing the course of our future. We are restoring hope where until recently it seemed elusive. I am deeply grateful to FCCPR for its confidence in me,” said Ms. Amatul-Wadud. 


Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s Message of Persistence Matters

(January 15, 2017) “Wait.” “This is not your time.” “Not this way.” “Go home.” “Unwise.”

We are most fortunate for Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s urgency in his mission of non-violent direct action, which disrupted the institutional bigotry and hate plaguing our country in the 1960s. Despite sentiments like those above uttered by onlookers - some likely well meaning and some not so well meaning - Dr. King remained resolved and committed to the mission of equality and his dream of universal prosperity.

Western Massachusetts has a particularly special relationship with, and a unique duty to protect, the dream of Dr. King. 

My Daughter's Heart-a-Versary

Today, our 7-year old daughter Mahmooda celebrates her seven year “heart-a-versary” since she received life saving open heart surgery as a newborn. Mahmood has a rare congenital heart defect that was repaired in this procedure. She’s now a happy and healthy 1st grader and is seen here celebrating her birthday recently.

Mahmooda’s recovery was a little bumpy, but the one thing we didn’t worry about as we nursed her to health was health insurance because she was covered under an employer sponsored plan. But what if she - like many families throughout the country - did not have this as a choice?


Our daughter is strong and vibrant. It’s so important to me that families never have to worry about whether they can afford to save their child’s life when faced with a health challenge. For this reason, as a candidate for Congress, I support a single payer health option for all of our families.


Will you join me in fighting for a single payer health option by contributing to my campaign for the First Congressional District of Massachusetts?


Kind regards,  

Tahirah Amatul-Wadud

February 19, 2018

Springfield Attorney Tahirah Amatul-Wadud Launches Campaign for US House of Representatives

(Springfield, Mass., December 18, 2017) Tahirah Amatul-Wadud, an area attorney, will launch her campaign as a candidate for the US House of Representatives for Massachusetts’ First Congressional District. She will publicly announce her candidacy December 19, 2017, in a three stop launch tour throughout the district. The tour begins at McCusker’s Market in Shelburne Falls at 10:00 am, where she will meet with voters and share with them her progressive platform for change. Ms. Amatul-Wadud will then travel to Dottie’s Coffee Lounge in Pittsfield and meet with voters at 1:00pm to discuss her vision. Ms. Amatul-Wadud is no stranger to Pittsfield. In January of this year she spoke at the historic Four Freedoms For All march and rally where she offered a message of hope and a call for people to unite around common values.

My Daughter's Heart-a-Versary

Dear Friend:

Today, our 7-year old daughter Mahmooda celebrates her seven year “heart-a-versary” since she received life saving open heart surgery as a newborn. Mahmood has a rare congenital heart defect that was repaired in this procedure. She’s now a happy and healthy 1st grader and is seen here celebrating her birthday recently.


Mahmooda’s recovery was a little bumpy, but the one thing we didn’t worry about as we nursed her to health was health insurance because she was covered under an employer sponsored plan. But what if she - like many families throughout the country - did not have this as a choice?


In the News (Archive)

Video: Tahirah on WRSI The River 93.9

  

(January 31, 2018) Watch as Tahirah Amatul-Wadud visits radio station WRSI The River 93.9 to talk about her candidacy and vision for the first congressional district. Listen to full interview here.

Video: Tahirah for Congress Launches in Springfield

(Dec 19, 2017) Tahirah Amatul-Wadud speaks to supporters in Springfield, MA as part of a three-city launch tour which also drew crowds in Pittsfield and Shelburne Falls earlier in the day. 

Video: Tahirah on Faith

Tahirah Amatul-Wadud talks about her beliefs, religiously diverse family, and love for cultivating connections in her community.

Join our mailing list!

Media professionals: Submit requests and inquiries here.