Lucy Flores, Nevada's first Latina Assemblywoman, told the Assembly Education Committee Monday that she had an abortion when she was 16. Her revelation came during a hearing on modernizing Nevada's abstinence-only sex education curriculum, reports the Reno Gazette Journal.
The Democrat representing Las Vegas explained that her single father to work two jobs to support her and her twelve siblings. “I had six other sisters, all of them became pregnant in their teens – all of them,” Flores said. "That is what I had to learn from.”
In Nevada, teen birth rates among blacks are double that of white teens, and for latinas, it’s triple. Statistics show how difficult it is to finish an education or get out of poverty for teenage mothers, and children of teen mothers are nine times more likely to live in poverty.
Flores supports comprehensive sex education because without education, she fears more teens will suffer. She said that in retrospect she wished she had been on birth control, if only someone had told her about it. As to her choice to terminate the pregnancy, “I don’t regret it,” Flores said.
Conservative media outlets blasted the lawmaker's admission. Local television producer Dana Gentry tweeted Thursday that Flores cancelled her appearance on a political news show after receiving death threats from people who heard about her abortion.
Assemblywoman Lucy Flores, who testified at sex ed hearing re abortion as a teen, recipient of threatening messages. Cancels Ralston Thur.— Dana Gentry (@DanaGentryLV) April 3, 2013
But supporters of Flores are rallying on social media, tweeting messages with the #FierceFlores hashtag.
#FierceFlores your honesty and integrity will take you far.Please, run for the U.S. Senate, we could use someone like you there.— Thack (@thack09) April 4, 2013