Feb. 27, 2009
POSITION: DIRECTOR, DOMESTIC POLICY COUNCIL
NOMINEE: Melody Barnes
BIRTH DATE: April 29, 1964 in Richmond, VA
Bachelor's degree with honors in History 1986, University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill
J.D. 1989, University of Michigan Law School
June-November 2008 Senior Domestic Policy Advisor for the Obama campaign
2004-2008 Executive Vice President for Policy, Center for American Progress
2003-2005 of Counsel, the Raben Group
1995-2003 Chief Counsel to Senator Edward Kennedy, Senate Judiciary Committee
1993-1995 Director of Legislative Affairs, Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
1991-1993 Assistant Counsel, U.S. House of Representatives Judiciary Subcommittee on Civil and Constitutional Rights
1989-1991 Attorney, Shearman and Sterling, New York City
Board member, EMILY'S List
Member of New York State Bar Association
Member of District of Columbia Bar Association
ON EMILY'S LIST
"EMILY's List, whose name is an acronym (Early Money is Like Yeast), is a national political action committee that works to elect pro-choice female Democrats. The group has turned the bundling of campaign contributions into an art form"
"Formally, there are only three requirements for a candidate to earn EL's support: The candidate must be a woman; she must be a Democrat; and she must support unrestricted access to taxpayer-funded abortion-on-demand. EMILY's List has withdrawn its support from women who vote against event the most extreme abortion positions. For instance, Mary Landrieu, the recently re-elected Democratic Senator from Louisiana, lost EL's backing when she voted in favor of a ban on partial-birth abortion."
ON THE ADMINISTRATION'S GOALS
Barnes says the goals of the new administration is to "get rid of our flawed economic philosophy" and set about the work of "creating new jobs" and "greening our economy."
"Quite frankly it's all about changing the world, changing the country, helping the American public realize what it means to have a progressive America, to hear the other side of the debate that we think that they've been missing for a long time."
"It is unacceptable to speak timidly about the right embodied in Roe v. Wade. Too much is at stake the lives and welfare of women, the well-being of their families, and of great importance a concept of liberty that includes women as equal."
"...Many of us believe it's critical to expand the conversation around reproductive rights and press for laws and policies that support the decision to have a family, as well as the decision to have an abortion."
"Family planning is the only realistic and proven means of reducing abortion rates and empowering women, and men, to make decisions about their lives and their families."
"President Bush and his allies have upped the ante in the battle over abortion, and turned it into a full-scale war on family planning. But as this war unfolds, women and men of good conscience need to understand that what is at stake here is the future of literally millions of women, their families, communities and societies."
Barnes called George W. Bush's administration a "war on science."
"We recognize science as being a tool to help solve many of the problems before us."
ON HEALTH CARE
"The health care system is no longer sustainable-it's a huge burden on individuals who aren't getting the care they need and on businesses. The squeeze on business is reflected by the scores of business people who are now at the policy table, looking for solutions."
ON CLIMATE CHANGE
"After years of denial, delay, distraction and distortion, climate change is changing the political climate."