For Immediate Release

Organization Profile: 

Liz Jacobs, 510-435-7674

NNU Endorses Democratic Primary Challenger to DNC Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz

Ft. Lauderdale, Fla. - National Nurses United, the largest nurses’ organization in the United States and in Florida, announced today its endorsement of Tim Canova who is running to become the next Member of the U.S. House of Representatives representing the 23rd District of Florida.  A professor of law and public finance at Nova Southeastern University Shepard Broad College of Law, Canova is running against incumbent Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz.

“We are proud to endorse Tim Canova today because he share’s nurses’ values of caring, compassion and community,” said Deborah Burger, RN, Co-President of National Nurses United, at a press conference here. 

“Tim Canova supports mandatory, minimum nurse-to-patient ratios so that patients in hospitals in South Florida and the rest of the country receive optimal care,” Burger stated.  “Debbie Wasserman Schultz has refused to support this important reform. 

“Tim Canova supports single-payer, Medicare-for-All health care so that safe, therapeutic care is guaranteed for all in this country; Debbie Wasserman Schultz has refused to support this,” she continued.  “Tim Canova supports a small Robin Hood Tax on Wall Street that would raise billions of dollars for programs to meet human needs; Debbie Wasserman Schultz has said no.

“Tim also is a staunch opponent of the Trans-Pacific Partnership and other trade deals which threaten public health systems and will drive up the price of medications around the world at the expense of people’s lives; Debbie Wasserman Schultz joined with Republicans and the big multinational corporations to vote for fast track authority for that same trade deal.”

“On issue after issue, Tim Canova lines up with the concerns of nurses and our patients while Debbie Wasserman Schultz has turned her back on these concerns,” Burger continued.  “Tim and the NNU also are vocal supporters of Bernie Sanders for President because he also shares these same values.  For all these reasons we are enthusiastically backing Tim Canova for Congress.”

Rose Campbell, RN,  Chief Nurse Representative at Palmetto General Hospital in Hialeah, Fla., added: “When elected we know Tim Canova will fight for guaranteed healthcare for all, real action on climate change and he will fight to get dirty money out of politics.  As nurses we fight everyday for these values.  Tim Canova will fight alongside of the nurses when elected to Congress.  Unfortunately, Rep. Wasserman Schultz has put too much of her focus on running the Democratic National Committee and cozying up to the big-money lobbyists and corporate interests-- and the concerns of her constituents in South Florida have suffered as a result.”

“On Day One of our union’s current collective bargaining negotiations with Florida Medical Center, Tim not only reached out to the nurses to offer his support but he even joined our picket line this morning to show his solidarity with the nurses as we fight for patient safety and better staffing,” said Chrystel Willis, Chief Nurse Representative at Florida Medical Center in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla. “This is why we’re supporting Tim Canova for Congress and why RNs in this Congressional district are determined to knock on doors and phone bank for him so he gets elected.”


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 "In responding to the NNU nurse questionnaire, Tim's answers showed his shared values and familiarity with the key issues facing nurses and their patients."

“I am grateful for the endorsement of the National Nurses United for my campaign for Florida’s 23rd Congressional District, said Canova in response to the NNU endorsement.

“My agenda aligns with nurses from top to bottom.  We insist that healthcare for all is a right and not a privilege, and that the richest country on earth can afford to provide healthcare and a decent retirement for all its citizens.  We call for single-payer Medicare for all universal health care and for protecting and expanding Social Security.  We reject proposals that would privatize these most successful programs.  We support expanded federal support for public hospitals and health care facilities, minimum nurse-to-patient staffing ratios, and protecting the right of nurses and all other workers to organize and engage in collective bargaining.”

“Together we call for holding Wall Street accountable for the damage it has done to our communities through its speculative and predatory financial practices.  And together we are fighting against the proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), which threatens to undermine our public health and safety and environmental protections, while raising the costs of prescription drugs and other medicines.  We call for an end to fracking (hydraulic fracturing), which accelerates the release of greenhouse gases and climate change while greatly threatening our drinking water with known carcinogens and neurotoxins.”

“I applaud the National Nurses Union, the largest union and professional association of registered nurses in the United States, for recognizing that to achieve this progressive agenda, we must first clean up the corruption in our politics.  We recognize that an unending flood of dark money has unduly influenced our elected representatives, and this must stop.  We must insist on full disclosure in campaign finance law and a transparent system of publicly financed campaigns that amplifies small donations. That is why my campaign is not taking a penny from corporations, their political action committees (PACs) and Super PACs.”

"I am proud today to stand with nurses in our campaign for progressive reform and we are eternally grateful for their support."

National Nurses United represents 185,000 registered nurses across the United States, including 9,000 RNs in Florida. 


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National Nurses United, with close to 185,000 members in every state, is the largest union and professional association of registered nurses in US history.

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