Romney has sought to distance himself from statements he made on abortion and contraceptives during the Republican primaries while driving home that his economic plan would create jobs for women and their families. Romney's wife, Ann, has been a key surrogate for her husband, vouching for him before female audiences.
In TV ads, Romney offers a moderate image. In one ad, a woman says that Romney "thinks abortion should be an option in cases of rape, incest or to save a mother's life" but says she's "more concerned about the debt our children will be left with." Another spot features women who served under Romney. "He totally gets working women," says Ellen Roy Herzfelder, Romney's former environmental affairs secretary.
Obama reminds voters that the first law he signed was the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, which prevents restrictions on workers filing lawsuits over pay inequity. Romney has not taken a position on the bill but said he wouldn't repeal it.
At rallies, the president routinely talks about the women in his life: how his grandmother watched men she trained get promoted over her, how education lifted his wife, Michelle, from a modest upbringing and why it wouldn't be fair if his two daughters earned less than their male counterparts when they eventually join the workforce.
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