Obama, Romney seek support from women after debate

One day after their contentious, finger-pointing debate, President Barack Obama and Republican Mitt Romney vied aggressively for the support of women voters Wednesday, as they and their running mates charged across nearly a half-dozen battleground states in the close race for the White House with 20 days to run.
Associated Press
Oct 18, 2012

Not even Republicans disputed that Obama's debate performance was much stronger than the listless showing two weeks earlier that helped spark a rise in the polls for Romney. The two rivals meet one more time, next Monday in Florida.

The first post-debate polls were divided, some saying Romney won, others finding Obama did. At least some of the voters who asked the questions in the town-hall style encounter remained uncommitted. "If Gov. Romney could actually provide the jobs, that would be a good thing because we really need them," said Nina Gonzalez, a 2008 Obama voter, neatly summarizing the uncertainty confronting voters in a slow-growth, high-unemployment economy.

Obama wore a pink wristband to show support for Breast Cancer Awareness Month as he campaigned in Iowa and then Ohio, and reminded his audience that the first legislation he signed after becoming president made it easier for women to take pay grievances to court.

Romney took no position on that bill when it passed Congress, and his campaign says he would not seek its repeal. But Obama chided him, saying, "That shouldn't be a complicated question. Equal pay for equal work."

He also jabbed at Romney's remark during Tuesday night's debate that as Massachusetts governor, he received "whole binders full of women" after saying he wanted to appoint more of them to his administration. "We don't have to collect a bunch of binders to find qualified, talented women," he said.

"I've got two daughters and I don't want them paid less for the same job as a man," Obama said at an appearance in Athens, Ohio, later Wednesday.

Obama spoke to a crowd of about 14,000 students and supporters at Ohio University, imploring them to vote early. "I want your vote. I am not too proud to beg. I want you to vote," he said.

Romney's campaign launched a new television commercial that seemed designed to take the edge ever so slightly off his opposition to abortion — another example of his October move toward the middle — while urging women voters to keep pocketbook issues uppermost in their minds when they cast their ballots.

"In fact he thinks abortion should be an option in cases of rape, incest or to save a mother's life," says a woman in the new ad. Pivoting quickly to economic matters, she adds, "But I'm more concerned about the debt our children will be left with. I voted for President Obama last time, but we just can't afford four more years."

That dovetailed with Romney's personal pitch to an audience in Chesapeake, Va.

"This president has failed American's women. They've suffered in terms of getting jobs," he declared, saying that 3.6 million more of them are in poverty now than when Obama took office.

With recent gains in the polls for Romney, he and the president are locked in an exceedingly close race as they shuttle from one critical state to another and dispatch surrogates ranging from former President Bill Clinton to ex-Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice to locations they cannot make on their own.

A little less than three weeks before Election Day, Obama appears on course to win states and the District of Columbia that account for 237 of the 270 electoral votes needed for victory. The same is true for Romney in states with 191 electoral votes.

The remaining 110 electoral votes are divided among the hotly contested battleground states of Florida (29), North Carolina (15), Virginia (13), New Hampshire (4), Iowa (6), Colorado (9), Nevada (6), Ohio (18) and Wisconsin (10).

As the campaign days dwindled down, the number of television commercials rose higher. According to media buyers who track ads, target voters in the area around Cleveland can expect to see an average of about 120 ads next week paid for by the two candidates and groups supporting them — more than 17 a day. There were similar, if somewhat less intense campaign-by-commercials under way across all the battleground states.

In many cases — Florida, Ohio, Wisconsin, Virginia, Nevada among them — competitive races for the Senate and even House contests added to the bombardment. So, too, campaign brochures, piling up in mailboxes earlier than past elections because of widespread pre-election day voting.

There was little mystery in the candidates' concentration on women voters. An AP-GfK survey taken in mid-September, when Obama was leading in the opinion polls, found that 8 percent of all likely votes were women who were either undecided or said they might change their minds.

Polls since the first debate two weeks ago show gains for Romney among women voters, a shift that Obama can ill afford given the traditional Republican advantage among men.

Democrats rebutted Romney's memory of the binders he received as the newly elected governor of Massachusetts in 2002.

On a conference call arranged by the Democratic National Committee, a former executive director of the Massachusetts Government Appointments Project said the group provided the resumes of women qualified for appointment unprompted. "To be perfectly clear, Mitt Romney did not request" them, said Jesse Mermell.

Romney quickly countered with a combination testimonial and fundraising appeal from Kerry Healey, who was his lieutenant governor in Massachusetts. She said he had named numerous women to his administration, adding, "He sought out our counsel, and he listened to our advice. We didn't always agree, but we were always respected."

Vice President Joe Biden's first stop of the day was in Greeley, Colo., where he mocked Romney on the same topic but in terms more pungent than Obama's. "What I can't understand is how he's gotten into this sort of 1950s time warp in terms of women," Biden said. "The idea he had to go and ask where a qualified woman was. He just should have come to my house. He didn't need a binder."

Republican Rep. Paul Ryan was in Berea, Ohio, where he said women were suffering under the economy as the end of Obama's term nears. "Twenty-six million women are trapped in poverty today. That's the highest rate in 17 years," he said. "We need to get people back to work."

In a lighter moment, he stopped by the football practice facility of the Cleveland Browns and lamented missing out on hunting season this fall. "I've got this election thing going on," he told Pro Bowl tackle Joe Thomas.




Correct me if I am wrong, but..isn't the Planned Parenthood thing the only legitimate (read: actual) issue between women and Mitt Romney?
And I mean, even coasterfan admits that Republicans merely campaign on regulating abortion but then they drop it like a hot potato after they are elected.

Did it ever occur to anyone that, even if he did remove govt funding for Planned Parenthood, you can still get cancer screenings in the, you know, cancer dePARTMENT (Oncology or w/e)!?
I love how Democrats always attach extra stuff to the things that we do need and then pretend like it is somehow all or nothing..AS IF we would magically lose our ability to screen for certain cancers (and other ailments that affect women) if Planned Parenthood wasn't getting govt funding anymore.

I honestly wish they WOULD do something to put the fear of responsibility back into teenagers, to scare them away from becoming "kids having kids."
How many mothers (and even grandmothers) are becoming grandmothers (and great-grandmothers) far too early, and end up being the one who takes care of their kid's child (or, in some cases, their grandkid's child)?
Have Democrat policies helped to mitigate this issue, or have they acted as an enabler for it?

Note definition #1 and #3. It is what one has to do when trying to cover up their past, and the subtlety of what they are doing now.



John Harville

You too shouldl inform yourself before RISKing the punch. In fact, teenagers in Ohio and the nation ARE being more responsible...but the same can't be said for their adult counterparts in Erie County where, in 2010, 395 of 745 live births were to unwed mothers/couples.


You are a moron.

John Harville

Oooo. Were you one of the 395?


I am surprised that you didn't try to attribute this new responsibility trend to a Democrat policy.
Do you know what caused this to happen? It was the Pro-Life movement who actually informed women about the reality of abortion..what the procedures actually consist of, new research showing the stages of development of the fetus, the risks, dangers, the adverse complications and after-effects which stack heavier with each additional abortion they undergo, not to mention the likely depression, etc.
It most certainly was not the Left Wingers, who have consistently tried to downplay these things.

Note definition #1 and #3. It is what one has to do when trying to cover up their past, and the subtlety of what they are doing now.

John Harville

It seems maybe you are the only RISK: "I honestly wish they WOULD do something to put the fear of responsibility back into teenagers, to scare them away from becoming "kids having kids.""
Do you EVER read anything more than rightwing info?
From ABC AUGUST 2012.."Teenagers are having babies at the lowest rate in at least 60 years."
Other articles and Health Department reports are resporting the same information, noting teenagers are more conservative in the approach and using condoms in record numbers to prevent preganancy and STDs.

And, yeah, when they first advocated ending funding for PP, Democrats AND PP noted NO government money goes for the 3% of PP that is involved in abortion...it's just nobody wanted to listen.

And there's also that FEDERAL law that prohibits ANY federal money being used to finance abortion ANYWHERE in the world.

Did you take classes in how to be uninformed?


Your beloved Planned Parenthood cites that there are upwards of 1,000,000 unwanted pregnancies per year.
If things are starting to move towards improvement, I would say that is awesome.
This, still, does not change the fact that you support positions that acted (and are still acting) as an enabler for unwanted pregnancies (such as your "abortion is contraception" statement, which is repulsive).

Note definition #1 and #3. It is what one has to do when trying to cover up their past, and the subtlety of what they are doing now.

John Harville

Ohio lowest in 21 years. DAYTON, Ohio (AP) — Ohio's birth rate among teenagers has dropped to at least a 21-year low, a trend experts say reflects less sex and more contraceptives.

According to the Dayton Daily News, the Ohio Department of Health reports Ohio last year had 34 births among every 1,000 girls between ages 15 and 19. That was down from 41 births per 1,000 teens in 2008 and is the lowest birth rate for that age group since 1990.

But factual information doesn't matter, does it?

Want even more to yell about? Of 745 births in Erie County in 2010, 395 were to unwed couples. Waitin' on the rant!!!


It's not the current babies causing the breakdown in our society... it's the products of this behavior who are old enough to wreak havoc on society now. The trend may be headed in the right direction, Einstein, but the benefits won't be felt for generations. Your argument is simply a red herring. Good on you.

John Harville

"The products of this behavior"? 'Splain it to me Summer. What behavior - you mean the parents from your generation who produced these teenagers who are being more responsible than you were? Once you define the "products", please define the 'havoc' they wreak on society now.
The 'benefits' of 84 babies born in 2010 to girls 15-19 "won't be felt for generations"? You mean until they have children?
The children born to families during the 'Baby Boom' was 5.6/family (though some averaged 6-8). The Baby Boomers, behaving more responsibly (while using birth control and 58 million being killed in Vietnam), limited the family birthrate to 2.3 children. Children of the Baby Boomers reproduced at a 1.8% clip and so far their grandchildren are even less.
Meanwhile the Baby Boomers built a huge SS trust fund that provided pensions for their parents and a huge pool from which Ronald Reagan borrowed to lower his deficit - and which Congress never has repaid.
The BB invented what they didn't have - like the computer you are using right now.
But I digress.
"the breakdown in our society" would be what?
and the "current babies" is where this thread began when RISK wanted more responsible behavior.
For me - four decades into marriage with my first wife - I would link any breakdown to the 20-30 somethings who either aren't marrying or are divorcing at will. Republicans stress the importance of the two-parent (male-female) but refuse to recognize how few of those exist - especially with original parents.


john - when you talk about the declining funds in social security don't forget to lay some of the blame on your boy o. you know, the one who had the great idea to decrease the amount each individual has to pay into it for the last 2 years and then has the ba!!s to blame someone else. just one more item that shows prez o has no idea what damage he is inflicting upon this country!


I am sure that you will remain in denial about the fact that the Pro-Life movement is responsible for things starting to show some improvement.

Note definition #1 and #3. It is what one has to do when trying to cover up their past, and the subtlety of what they are doing now.

John Harville

RISK..."Correct me if I am wrong, but..isn't the Planned Parenthood thing the only legitimate (read: actual) issue between women and Mitt Romney?"

Okay. No.

Equal Pay. Violence Against Women Act. Lilly Ledbetter (Ryan voted against). Eliminate Pell Grants. Healthcare generally. Well, that's a start.


I will be back and will edit this reply after I have researched everything you just said. I can bet that these general statements you make are not what you make them see, tho.

Note definition #1 and #3. It is what one has to do when trying to cover up their past, and the subtlety of what they are doing now.


If cancer prevention for women is so important to the Democrats why wasnt it included in Obamacare? You know, Because they care and all.

John Harville

Cancer Prevention IS in Obamacare. Everyone will have insurance in some form and EVERY insurance policy provides cancer screening...for men and women. Had your PSA recently. Have the women in your life had their annual screenings?


Duh, it is.

John Harville

Cancer screenings/counseling/related items are among 22 items of Preventive Care Services for Women under OBAMACAREs. There are 26 services for men - including counseling for denial and other mental disorders....


Oh, that was a good one!


Then why the support for planned parenthood? If their services are already covered by obamacare why subsidize a outside agency to do the same thing? Weird huh? What does planned parenthood do that obamacare doesnt?


Y U NO Answer Question???? HA!


So sorry for overlooking your question. Planned Parenthood takes insurance as payment. Obamacare is a health insurance plan.


In case I didn't fully answer your question...
Planned Parenthood is a non-profit provider of health care. Non-profit does not mean free to everyone. Obamacare is a way to pay for that care. The reasons why a person (a man or a woman)would choose to go to a non-profit provider vary.


I understand. The taxpayers subsidize a organization to stay open to take in patients that pay with taxpayer funded insurance. Quite the scam, They get paid twice while not being held responsible for hitting the hot topic of stabbing fetuses in the head on the governmental level. No wonder why taxpayers are mad.

The Big Dog's back

rand, open mouth, insert foot.


I didnt insert anything. Just pointing out the fact that we subsidize a agency for poor folks with no insurance when everyone now gets insurance due to Obamacare and they should do away with it because there is no need for it. Now they have insurance they can go anywhere for care.


@ Reese and Big Dog
You can`t argue ignorance,
Just vote. Vote twice:)


Logic is confusing for you huh?


Well said, Sam.

God forbid Romney and conservatives not want hard-working, responsible taxpayers to pay for the irresponsible actions of others. Oh how many of you liberals did I OFFEND by saying "God" already?

People who think the government should be paying for anything to do with birth control are probably part of the 47 MILLION on food stamps that I pay for dispite the fact I'm a recent college graduate and can barely support myself in this free-loader economy we've become.

Less liberals would be liberals if they knew all the FACTS as opposed to listening to biased media coverage and debate moderators.