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Yup! That’s little me, Grandma in uniform, and the kind of Barbie I had!

Growing up, I had one Barbie doll, Air Force Barbie to be specific, which was a gift from a relative and reference to my grandmother, who served in the branch in real life. She came with shorter hair, a flight suit, and pearl earrings. My active-duty Navy mom was not a Barbie fan, but I was allowed to keep the gift and dressed her up in orphaned socks that I had transformed into ball gowns.

Here’s the thing, while baby dolls were traditionally marketed to little girls so they could pretend to be parents, Barbie is a grown-up who takes care of herself. With a little imagination and determination, Barbie can be anything.

I love being a mom and raising my sons. But like Barbie, I’ve never limited myself to just one dream.

Student loans, financial aid, and lots of jobs cooking and cleaning houses helped me earn my college degree. I worked as a journalist and later as a staffer on the Hill before running for and winning a seat in the Maryland House of Delegates. But I’m not done yet.

Maryland’s 6th District has been represented by over forty men and only two women. It’s been 30 years since the last woman was elected to the House from our district! Our state has not had a woman in federal office since Senator Barbara Mikulski. And nationally, only 6.8% of Congress members are moms with kids under 18. It’s time to change that. It’s time to show today’s children that just like Barbie, women can achieve whatever we set our minds to.

I’m ready to take on a broken Congress to finally pass reasonable gun safety measures on the federal level, address the opioid crisis, and always protect Social Security, Medicare, and our reproductive freedoms.

Our society and Barbie’s development into a feminist icon have come a long way since she was introduced in 1959. Still, we’ve got a lot of work left to do.

In the legislature, I’ve led the fight to protect our reproductive rights, earned bipartisan support banning illegal ghost guns, closed the gap of healthcare workers in rural areas, and lowered childcare costs for Maryland families like mine.

Now, I’m running for the only Congressional district that’s in play this cycle in Maryland. Unlike virtually every other race here, there will be a highly competitive primary and general election. Let me tell you, it’s going to take a tough woman to keep this swing seat blue.

I hope you’ll chip in $100, $250, $500, or what you can today to keep this competitive open seat blue and send a proven woman leader to Congress.

We’ve got a big goal left to meet this month, and your support will make a huge difference. Early money helps strong candidates get elected.

– Lesley

When she’s not busy being a mom to her two toddlers, Lesley Lopez serves the people of Maryland as a Delegate from District 39 in the Maryland General Assembly. Since she was first elected in 2018, Lesley has rapidly become an effective legislator and leader, spearheading efforts to alleviate student debt, improve the delivery and efficiency of health care, and protect the limited financial resources of economically vulnerable Marylanders. Lesley has passed legislation to strengthen gun safety laws and guarantee the rights for all women in the state. She is an adjunct professor at George Washington University and a proud union member of SEIU Local 500. Lesley lives in Germantown, MD, with her husband Richard Kelly, and their two sons, Max and Graham.

Click here to chip in to send Lesley to Congress!

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