Third Democrat announces bid for Congress in 12th District

By Michelle Ganassi michelleg@dailyamerican.com - Daily American- June 20, 2017

A Pittsburgh litigation attorney has announced that she intends to seek the Democratic nomination in the 12th Congressional District.

Elizabeth M. Tarasi, an attorney with Tarasi & Tarasi, said she has spent her entire career fighting for the rights of people from Western Pennsylvania and will continue to fight for them if elected.

“I am very upset with what is going on in Washington, very upset with the representation that our district is getting,” she said. “It caused me to decide to make a career change and get in and fight for the people of the 12th.”

She said she will run for Congress to bring integrity to Washington and to secure a better future for her two sons, ages 24 and 27.

She cited the debate over the Affordable Care Act and the American health care system.

“They’ve been fighting it now for eight years,” she said. “Health care is a good thing. To have our people covered is a good thing.”

She said she would also like to fight against cuts to veterans benefits and the armed services.

“I believe education is key to long-term economic growth and our competitiveness as a superpower,” she said.

She said she would also fight for the environment.

“Our scientists (and) military intelligence agencies all agree climate change is occurring and is directly related to human activity,” she said. “They are the experts. As a litigator, I hire experts. I am going to rely on scientists and experts, not lobbyists, to warn me about what’s going on. I want to fight for laws that support clean air and water.”

Tarasi said she believes the United States should be a global leader on climate change.

“I’m starting into the sunset of my life,” she said. “I hopefully will have grandchildren. I want them to have a clean earth. I want them to have clean air, clean water.”

She said she believes that lawmakers are beginning to abandon seniors. She is against privatizing Social Security.

“My parents are in their 80s and when I see cuts in Medicaid in the health care bill, that alarms me,” she said. “I don’t want to let my parents, or any seniors, down.”

Tarasi said federal lawmakers do not know how to work as a team.

“Extreme political positions block them from getting the job done,” she said. “We have to learn to work together to bring some normalcy to our government.”

She plans to attend local events and get to know Somerset County residents. When her boys were young, they skied at Hidden Valley.

“I want to talk to the people,” she said. “I want to meet the people and do everything I can.”

She said she is interested in learning about the farming community and talking with farmers about balancing federal regulations and their ability to run their farms.

“I am so impressed with people who do that for a living,” she said. “That is one of the hardest ways to make a living.”

Tarasi, 57, of Sewickley, is the third person to announce their intent to seek the Democratic nomination. Earlier this year University of Pittsburgh doctoral candidate Aaron Anthony, 34, of Shaler Township, and former 82nd Airborne sniper Tom Prigg, 46, of McCandless, announced that they would seek the Democratic nod.

The seat is held by Republican Keith Rothfus, of Sewickley.

Tarasi said her experience separates her from the other candidates.

“I have the experience, integrity and the results to stand up and be able to lead and be a successful candidate,” she said.