EMILY's List names incumbent Dems it will fundraise for
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EMILY's List, the powerful liberal group that backs female candidates who support abortion rights, is launching its "Hold the Line" initiative by naming six House members to its incumbent protection program. 
 
 
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“Republicans in Congress have wasted time and taxpayer dollars in advancing their out of touch and extreme agenda. In order to stop this extreme agenda, we must hold the line while expanding the number of pro-choice Democratic women in Congress," Stephanie Schriock, the group's president, said in a statement. 
 
“We are proud to stand with our women leaders who have worked to end gender discrimination in pay, stood up to Republican efforts to restrict women’s access to health care, and prioritized women and families’ economic security. Their continued leadership in the House of Representatives is a top priority for EMILY’s List.”
 
The distinction means EMILY's List will begin to raise money for the lawmakers. It could amount to a significant financial boost ahead of the general election. The group counts more than 3 million members and says it has raised more than $400 million to support candidates. 
 
An EMILY's List aide noted that Friday's launch was just the beginning and more members could be added to the program later.
 
Brownley, Bustos, Kuster and Sinema are all running for their third term in Congress after being elected in 2012. Both Napolitano and Velázquez are longtime lawmakers, serving since 1999 and 1993, respectively.
 
All of the races are listed as "solid" Democratic seats by the nonpartisan Cook Political Report, except for Sinema's, which is rated a "likely Democratic" seat.