But right before the activities take place at the Embassy Suites hotel on Fowler Avenue, some NOW activists plan to picket Florida GOP U.S. Senator Marco Rubio's Tampa District offices, located near the conference on Spectrum Boulevard.
Activists are calling the protest to stop "slash-onomics" as Congress gets around to voting on the 2012 budget. Although the Paul Ryan-led House budget was voted down by the Democratic-led U.S. Senate last month, NOW activists still want to highlight the fact that it would dismantle the Medicare program, make Medicaid a block-grant program with money going directly to the states, and take away money from programs that they say disproportionately serve and employ women, such as Head Start and Pell Grants.
From the press release:
Sen. Rubio stands as a prominent symbol of radical right-wing "Tea Party" politics, which aim to lower taxes on the wealthiest while waging a war on women. He also represents a faction that oddly forgets what home rule means when it comes to the District of Columbia. This budget proposes to once again overrule D.C.'s local decision-making authority to direct its own dollars toward providing abortion care for women who would not receive health care without government assistance. By calling on Congress to stay out of D.C., the NOW rally will stand in solidarity with a demonstration organized by national civil rights leaders, which takes place the following day outside the White House.