September 19th, 2008
06:00 PM ET
6 years ago

Obama pitches himself to women

Obama is making a pitch to women voters.
Obama is making a pitch to women voters.

CORAL GABLES, Florida (CNN) – Barack Obama took his week long economic message and gave it a different spin, pitching himself to several thousand female Floridians as the candidate who best understands what women want.

“This isn’t just about politics for me this is personal because I come here today not just as a candidate for president but as a son and a grandson, as a husband and a father who’s seen first hand, throughout my life, the challenges so many women face everyday in this country,” he told a rally at the University of Miami.

Obama needs the women’s vote. The addition of Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin to the Republican ticket and Obama’s decision to pass on Hillary Clinton for his running mate slot put some segments of the female vote up for grabs. Recent polling shows Obama winning women overall but he continues to trail McCain among white women by about 15 points. John Kerry lost that group by 11 points in 2004. This weekend, female Obama surrogates will be hosting events in all 50 states and the campaign is releasing a television ad on equal pay.

As women waved “Women for Obama,” “Moms for Obama,” and “Caregivers for Obama” signs, the Democratic presidential nominee said he understood the downturn in the economy has hit women particularly hard with the cost of child care, education and running a household getting further out of reach. As he has done all week on the economy, Obama sought to paint his Republican opponent as out-of-touch with women.

“It’s not that Senator McCain doesn’t care about what’s gong on in the lives of women in this country, I like to think that it’s just that he doesn’t know,” he said. “Why else would he oppose legislation to help women get equal pay and suggest that the reason women aren’t paid fairly isn’t because of discrimination on the job but because they need more education and training. He must not understand, he must not know.”

Obama touted Joe Biden’s authorship of the Violence Against Women’s Act, something campaign advisors hope to showcase in the ticket’s effort to win over women. While he rarely brings up the politically tricky issue of abortion on the campaign trail, Obama fully embraced it in front of this audience.

Change means a president who will stand up for choice, who understands that five men on the supreme court don’t know better than women and their families and their doctors about what’s best for their health,” he said. “I will never back down from defending a woman’s right to choose.”

Despite her popularity, Obama only mentioned Sen. Hillary Clinton only once and gave her a nod for putting “those 18 million cracks in that glass ceiling.” Clinton however is a crucial part in the Obama campaign’s efforts to court the women vote. She and Biden held an Internet conversation this week on women’s issues.

soundoff (407 Responses)
  1. susie

    Obama is the one who is against women. Calling us "typical white woman", silly, not picking Hillary as a running mate, calling a reporter "sweetie".

    September 19, 2008 10:11 pm at 10:11 pm |
  2. Eric in Phoenix

    If Obama had picked Govenor Napolitano from Arizona then we never would have heard about Sarah Palin.

    Napolitano is a 2 term govenor.

    She has impeccable foreign policy credentials having hosted several international delegations.

    She has worked across party lines in the state.

    She is more popular than McCain in Arizona bringing the state into play.

    This is a border state and she has a very good understanding of Immigration and a good relationship with the hispanic community.

    As far as I'm concerned, Obama lost my vote when he chose Joe Biden. If he loses the election he has no one to blame but himself.

    September 19, 2008 10:11 pm at 10:11 pm |
  3. Lynn EX -Democrat now for McCain

    Were all so sick of Obama we could Puke!! Stop! We are all domed if we let those Obama freaks in the white House! The democrats are diseased in the mind, because the truth is there just as much the blame for the War! I think most women our for McCain and Palin!

    September 19, 2008 10:12 pm at 10:12 pm |
  4. brenda

    McCain tries to get my vote by putting a pitbull with lipstick on the ticket. She is a disgrace to women hood. I believe Obama
    is sincere and really cares about women's issues. I will not be fooled by the lies of McCain/Palin.

    September 19, 2008 10:12 pm at 10:12 pm |
  5. ber6964

    Go Obama/Biden Go!!!

    September 19, 2008 10:14 pm at 10:14 pm |
  6. PAPI

    AFTER READING THESE COMMENTS I WANT TO SAY EVERYONE SAYS OBAMA IS A FLIP FLOPER BUT AS WE SEE MCCAIN DID NOT WANT TO DO A BAIL OUT OF AIG. AND TTHE NEXT DAY CHANGE HIS STAND. WE WOULD HAVE LOST ALL OUR PENSION IF THEY WERE NOT BAILED OUT.
    WHAT IS UP WITH PALIN SCARED TO FACE THE REPORTERS BY HERSELF. AND NOW ALL OF A SUDDEN DOES NOT WANT TO COOPERATE WITH THE INVESTIGATION. USUALLY IF YOU ARE NOT GUILTY YOU WOULD NOT CARE.
    HAS ANYONE NOTICE THAT EVERYTIME A BAD THING HAPPEN TO THE MCCAIN TICKET IT IS ALWAYS OBAMA'S FAULT. THEY NEVER TAKE THE BLAME.
    I DONT CARE IF HE WAS IN THE MILITARY BECAUSE I AM ALSO 17YRS SERVERD IN 3 WARS AND IT STILL DOES NOT GIVE ME THE RIGHT THE THRONE.
    I WAS FOR MCCAIN UNTIL HE DID NOT SUPPORT THE G.I BILL FOR MY FELLOW WORRIERS. AND YES I AM PART OF THE FEW AND THE PROUD.

    September 19, 2008 10:17 pm at 10:17 pm |
  7. Eleanor

    Obama is for a lot of womens issues whether people realize it or not
    on another note
    Its beyond pathetic when the presidential *republican* nominee has to go everywhere with the VP pick bc he himself cannot draw enough of a crowd
    THAT in itself should tell you something about this team!
    You are not voting for a *popularity contest*!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    You are voting for the next **President**!!!!!
    Wake up and smell the coffee before you have the two MCSames in there again for another 4!!!

    September 19, 2008 10:20 pm at 10:20 pm |
  8. GOP for Obama

    MAKE ONE THING CLEAR -----MCSAME DID not PICK A WOMAN AS v.p. THE EXTREME RIGHT WING CHRISTIANS PICKED HER FOR HIM.

    McSame is the right wing's beeee-och

    Amen

    September 19, 2008 10:22 pm at 10:22 pm |
  9. Jan

    Sarah Palin is the modern Dan Quayle - SARAH QUAYLIN This WOMAN is voting Obama/Biden

    September 19, 2008 10:22 pm at 10:22 pm |
  10. brenda

    Aren't there laws against women selling themselves? Palin should be put in jail for prostitution because she has sold herself to a campaign full of lies. And she didn't even blink!!!!!!!!

    September 19, 2008 10:23 pm at 10:23 pm |
  11. Tonia

    How can any smart abled bodied american think of voting for Mccain. have we not suffered enough from the republican lies and deciet. four more years of McCain is going to be hell on earth. up Obama -biden.

    September 19, 2008 10:24 pm at 10:24 pm |
  12. mitchell

    everyone loves obama! he's awesome! smart,too. he brings people together and promotes calm conversations. even when other balacks are being rude to him, he tries to be polite. this is why i'm a 'rednecks for obama' member. i think his race is a little bit of all of us. i like that.

    September 19, 2008 10:25 pm at 10:25 pm |
  13. mitchell

    mccain picked a woman for president so he could use her.

    September 19, 2008 10:27 pm at 10:27 pm |
  14. inuk of the north

    Well, well. well. Sarah Palin continues to peel votes from the Dems and now Obama realizes the full value of those votes.

    It's funny how politicians only respond when they need the votes.

    A few months ago OB felt he didn't need help with women and now the red flags are flying, the radar's beeping and the Dems have launched 'WONDERFUL WOMEN'S WEEK' and the Anointed One is playing suck-up.

    HRC was the most natural and best choice for VP and the OB team arrogantly dismissed her. Good judgement, huh?

    If a so-called weak, lying, inexperienced, morally defective candidate like Palin can peel votes from His Royal Luminosity, how good is this guy really?

    When the elction is over, there will be plenty of blood-letting in the Dem party and lots of familiar faces will be gone.

    I'm going to start a pool where we pick the politician and the date they quit or get fired. First, Dean. Second, Pelosi. Third, Obama. Fourth, Reid. And many more later.

    September 19, 2008 10:28 pm at 10:28 pm |
  15. AUC

    Smart Women for Obama/Biden 08/12

    Barack the VOTE

    September 19, 2008 10:29 pm at 10:29 pm |
  16. bill b. from Stratford,Ct

    To all the women out here who keep saying Obama doesn't respect them, that's why they can't vote for him, please, stop with the excuses. Just admit it too yourselfs, he's a blackman and you can't vote for a blackman. So if your not happy with Obama go vote for the guy(Mcsame) WHO REALLY DOESN'T RESPECT WOMEN and who will start wars and have your sons and daughters fighting. A guy who thinks women shouldn't get paid the some as men. A guy who run out on his first wife when she was in a very bad car accident, yeah that's true honor!!!!. So go ahead vote for that guy who wants to over turn "ROE vs WADE

    September 19, 2008 10:31 pm at 10:31 pm |
  17. Canta

    It seems the same group of people blog or are you just bots.

    Have any of you even bothered to do some research, have any of you studied who voted for what? Did you study all the canditates fully?

    My Daddy used to tell me "I noticed the young men looking at you, soon they will be asking you out, I want you to do me a favor. I want you to listen to them boast and brag, let them talk, cause they are just trying to give you a little sweet talk." I said "Oh what should I do?" He said " They only want something from you, maybe a smooch maybe something more, don't fall for it. Do something first, first find out what this guy has done, find out everything you can, your a smart girl." This was real good advice from my Dad

    You girls have got to get smart. Obama has done nothing in Congress and if you find out just what he did do in his community service job you will run for the hills.

    McCain/Palin 08

    September 19, 2008 10:33 pm at 10:33 pm |
  18. KC

    Angela, you could not have ever really been a Hillary supporter if you are even thinking of going over the the McCain/Palin ticket, they are agianst everything Hillary has ever supported. You are either a plant or uneducated, hey I can't hold that against you but... VOTE issues not gender!!!

    September 19, 2008 10:34 pm at 10:34 pm |
  19. Sandy

    How can any woman vote for a man who picked an inexperienced lying person to be his running mate.
    The woman lies so much she now cannot distinguish the truth from her lies.
    She tells Charlie Gibson that she didn't blink and eye when asked to run for veep. But she tell Sean Hannity, that she waited and talked it over with her girls and they decided as a family.
    She tells anyone who'll listen that her state brings in 20% of oil to the lower 48, yet it's been said that it's as little as 3.5% to 13%
    She told Charlie that she's been to Iraq and Germany and other countries, yes but only to have her plane refueled.
    She can see Russia, Siberia from her backyard, how does this give her international experience.
    She said that she would put the Fed budget online. She doesn't even know that it's been online for 2 years already, due to a bill brought in part by Barack Obama.

    Chuck Hagel from her own party doesn't consider her to be veep material, so anyone who reads the newspapers, watches cable or non cable news must know that this woman is not ready to be the Vice President of the US.

    Please people, follow the issues.

    September 19, 2008 10:35 pm at 10:35 pm |
  20. It's Over Barry! Go Back to Chicago!

    Face it:. "The New Messiah" is just a common street agitator. It's over! Go home Barry.

    You're not fooling anybody, you're not going to be President

    It's back to the senate as a footnote in history!

    McCain/Palin '08 The Choice for Smart People!

    September 19, 2008 10:37 pm at 10:37 pm |
  21. AA

    My favorite not reported news item of the day.

    Taken directly from a letter written by John McCain, this is his Health Care plan...


    Opening up the health insurance market to more vigorous nationwide competition, as we have done over the last decade in banking, would provide more choices of innovative products less burdened by the worst excesses of state-based regulation.

    The man is obviously not playing with a full deck.

    Peace.

    September 19, 2008 10:37 pm at 10:37 pm |
  22. Emily

    We want to see more of Hillary and Michelle on campaign. Then I am convinced you really are for women.

    September 19, 2008 10:37 pm at 10:37 pm |
  23. Bridget

    On this evening news, 9/19, Obama had a photo opt with former members of Clinton economic team. He was surrounded by them but where was Hillary. No wonder Hillary supporters are going to vote for McCain. Every chance he gets, he ignores the Clinton's.
    He thinks women are stupid and don't notice these things. This is why Obama will lose the election. He just is too inexperienced to be President and he knows nothing about the women that supported Hillary Clinton. He can't win us back.

    September 19, 2008 10:38 pm at 10:38 pm |
  24. Valerie - North Carolina

    Barack Obama would bring intelligence, education, clear-thinking and a view that the world can be better to the office of the presidency. it is impossible for me to think of the consequences this country would face with 72 year old John McCaCane in office, good man that he is, a twice cancer survivor, and with Sarah Palin, totally unqualified, as VP just waiting to pounce. Love your country – vote smart – Vote Obama/Biden.

    A Senior Southern Lady – Independent voter

    September 19, 2008 10:39 pm at 10:39 pm |
  25. Janice Il

    Don't even go there, Hillary supporters are still trying to get over him not picking the best, "put democrats over the top in this election candidate", and you want to tell us that he's out for our vote? Tell us why he did not pick a woman, or if she turned him down. It would help.

    September 19, 2008 10:39 pm at 10:39 pm |
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