October 18, 2012 — With about three weeks until Election Day, President Obama and Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney on Wednesday each made their case that they would do the most for women, a key demographic in an increasingly tight race, the New York Times reports (Rutenberg/Peters, New York Times, 10/17). Women account for the majority of undecided voters in swing states, according to Obama campaign advisers.
At a campaign event in Mount Vernon, Iowa, on Wednesday, Obama touted his support for women's access to health care and criticized Romney for distancing himself from a discussion about Planned Parenthood during the presidential debates.
Obama said Romney "didn't want to talk" during Tuesday's debate "about how he wants to end funding for Planned Parenthood ... because he can't sell it" (Gardner, Washington Post, 10/17).
Obama continued, "I don't think your boss should control the healthcare you get," adding, "I don't think insurers should control the healthcare you get. I certainly don't think politicians should control the healthcare you get" (Baker, "Healthwatch," The Hill, 10/17).
Romney Campaign's Strategy
Meanwhile, aides to Romney's campaign said their goal is to convince undecided female voters that Romney does not hold highly conservative positions on social issues, the Times reports.
Their strategy includes an ad released earlier this week in which a woman states that Romney "doesn't oppose contraception at all" and "thinks abortion should be an option in cases of rape, incest or to save a mother's life."
However, Cecile Richards, president of the Planned Parenthood Action Fund, said Romney is trying to "mislead the American people about his plan to turn women's health care decisions over to their bosses." She cited Romney's support for an amendment earlier this year that would have allowed employers and insurers to deny any health coverage required under the ACA for moral or religious reasons (New York Times, 10/17).
Debra Ness, publisher & president, National Partnership
Andrea Friedman, associate editor & director of reproductive health programs, National Partnership
Marya Torrez, associate editor & senior reproductive health policy counsel, National Partnership
Melissa Safford, associate editor & policy advocate for reproductive health, National Partnership
Perry Sacks, assistant editor & health program associate, National Partnership
Cindy Romero, assistant editor & communications assistant, National Partnership
Justyn Ware, editor
Amanda Wolfe, editor-in-chief
Heather Drost, Hanna Jaquith, Marcelle Maginnis, Ashley Marchand and Michelle Stuckey, staff writers
Tucker Ball, director of new media, National Partnership