Pretty in pink and for a cause
October 17th, 2012
02:32 PM ET
6 years ago

Pretty in pink and for a cause

(CNN) - Michelle Obama and Ann Romney's dresses drew attention at Tuesday's presidential debate first for their color, and second for the statement they may have made.

While their husbands clashed spectacularly onstage, Obama's and Romney's dresses bore more in common than one might expect of people with their two last names.

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Both showed up in vibrant pink - which is the color of the breast cancer awareness effort, and October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

President Barack Obama may have been in on the occasion, too. His suit was black, shirt was white, and tie was red, but tucked up his right sleeve was a pink wristband. He wore the wristband at a campaign event on Wednesday, and in early October, issued a proclamation saying in October "we honor those we have lost, lend our strength to those who carry on the fight, and pledge to educate ourselves and our loved ones about this tragic disease."

Michelle Obama wore her knee and sleeved length pink dress with a matching pink jacket and a pearl necklace. An Obama campaign official said the color was in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

Ann Romney topped her short-sleeved dress with an emerald necklace. She is a survivor of early stage breast cancer.

A spokeswoman for Romney's campaign did not return CNN's request for comment on whether Ann Romney's wardrobe selections were a nod to Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

But some on social media weighed in regardless.

Anisa Cottrell Willis wrote on Facebook, "Among the scandals of last night....the First Lady and Ms Romney in the exact same color Barbie pink dresses."

Will the two spouses sport similar shades in the same room again? They'll have an opportunity next Monday, at the third presidential debate in Boca Raton, Florida.

- CNN's Kevin Liptak and Gregory Wallace contributed to this report

Filed under: 2012 • Ann Romney • Michelle Obama
soundoff (117 Responses)
  1. griffbos

    I think it is great that both choose to wear pink in honor of Breast Cancer month. as an Independent I have made my decision on who I will be voting for, I have seen up close both men in power for 4 years Romney was my Governor and Obama my president . Romney was hand a piece of cake when he took office , yet he raised taxes on small bussiness, and most communities raised taxes, laid off people or cut services when he cost shifted State programs on tho the backs of local governments, he says he plans to do the same if lelected, when he left office the State was number 47th in job growth yet promises us 12 million new jobs....don';t see how he can to it, doesn;t matter which one gets elected the economy is growing and jobs are going to continjue to be created, just don;t see or belive Romney can grow jobs to the level he promises. Obama was delat a bad deck of cards the economy was crashing worse than we thought, and some seem to forget just how bad it was, we nned to reduce the defict, while reforming taxes, but I feel it needs to be done inthe right way, just passing the buck and bill to States is not going to solve the problem , it is just a cop out to me from making the hard choices, leaving for someone else to deal with the mess just to clean up your balance sheet....Obama I believe understand the midlde class better than Romney, based on what I know, seen and read I have decided to give Obama another 4 years in hope he does the right things as I don't trust Romney to do so......

    October 17, 2012 09:39 pm at 9:39 pm |
  2. Maryellen

    Borderless, great comment, good for you! Whatever your politics Obama and Romney have great wives who have worked so hard for their husbands and they both deserve the respect of the American people.

    October 17, 2012 09:41 pm at 9:41 pm |
  3. Michigan patriot

    Mrs. Romney is a beautiful woman, and she will be a "real lady," when she gets in the White House. We need a big change in our country, and Mitt Romney is the man to do the job.

    October 17, 2012 09:51 pm at 9:51 pm |
  4. ManTex

    Right. It is all about the stylish titty pink thingy. Life has to be good when one can champion innate causes.

    October 17, 2012 09:53 pm at 9:53 pm |
  5. Sherrie Mathieson

    The comments are pretty tacky on this site..and many don't even know how Ann spells her name. Both women are doing their best...and Ann Romney has had to overcome many physical hurdles. When will people stop being so hostile and unkind?

    October 17, 2012 09:56 pm at 9:56 pm |
  6. @MuseumWayPearls

    Kudos to both for supporting the cause! Though our vote goes to the Michelle – she not only looked radiant in pink, but we also love her timeless and classic pearl elegant accessory for a very poised and polished First Lady!

    October 17, 2012 09:58 pm at 9:58 pm |
  7. Smeagel4T

    It's actually mind boggling the number of tiny little details every campaign has to "get right" lest they come under attack. Both sides will find something if it is there, although Fox are the real professionals at exploiting a meaningless misstep by Democrats than any other main media outlet does with the Republicans. MSNBC isn't anywhere near as professional at exploiting Republican meaningless missteps as Fox is at exploiting Democratic meaningless missteps.

    October 17, 2012 10:04 pm at 10:04 pm |
  8. ohio

    liked their pink but thought that michelle looked much better and much more comfortable
    speaking to the crowd. I felt like Mrs. Romney was just enduring being there. She did not
    seem happy to me at all–and romney seemed rattled after the debate. I think the romneys
    were bested pretty well last night!

    October 17, 2012 10:11 pm at 10:11 pm |
  9. mjw

    To CB FL

    I don't know if that was meant tongue in cheek, but it is offensive. The black family belongs in the WH more than any other because their forefathers built it. I am so proud to see them there....from the Out House to the White House. It is sad that some people will go to their grave with so much hate and bitterness in their heart.

    October 17, 2012 10:11 pm at 10:11 pm |
  10. Wondering Wanda

    I like the Pink–Since Friday is Think Pink Day–Great Idea ladies–I wonder how many poeple will buy Ann's dress vs the First Lady's?

    October 17, 2012 10:12 pm at 10:12 pm |
  11. Natalie

    Rae Sunners – how can anyone view your comment witihout coming to the conclusion that you are the worst possble racist, with nothing of any valuable to offer in this commentary?

    October 17, 2012 10:32 pm at 10:32 pm |
  12. Charlie in Maine

    Pink for breast cancer awareness month. Bless them both. Then vote for Michelle's hyband.

    October 17, 2012 11:03 pm at 11:03 pm |
  13. Larry L

    I'm proud of the way America has stepped up to support breast cancer research. Still, I can't help but worry about America's capability to make breakthroughs at that level. A large percentage of our people still fight against stem cell research, think environmental protection is a liberal plot, can't accept man's role in causing climate change, consider contraception "evil", and believe the Earth to be around 6000 years old. Science and math in our schools is failing. On our current trajectory America will never be able to produce the brainpower required to cure cancer. It's a noble cause but those working towards a solution deserve more than financial support. They also need to live in a society moving forward to increase the body of scientific knowledge rather than constantly resisting intellectual achievement.

    October 18, 2012 01:12 am at 1:12 am |
  14. dachozen1

    2 beautiful women who appears to be supporting a great cause. I just dont understand considering all Ann Romney has been through, why she wouldnt want the same healthcare for people less fortunate. Ann should understand more than anyone the importance to insure everyone the ability to affordable healthcare and subsidies for those who cant afford it. I'm sure she is a good woman but it is inexcusable to not support available healthcare for everyone.

    October 18, 2012 01:15 am at 1:15 am |
  15. fernace

    I'm glad that both the FLOTUS & Ann Romney supports the same cause! Glad to see the POTUS does as well! Finally something to agree on! 3 out of 4 aint bad! Romney can keep his "snarky expression"! He really wants to be president, but I get the feeling it's mostly an ego thing, not because he wants to help "you people"! Thanks to @ The REAL Truth for saying it like it is in Tx! A friend recently made a comment that there are no "compasionate conservatives" in Tx, only mean conservatives! So true! Sniffit, keep sniffing 'em out, love your comments! Priceless!! Obama, Next 4!!

    October 18, 2012 02:35 am at 2:35 am |
  16. Think for yourself

    It's amazing to me to read the mainstream comments. I work directly in human services and see the horrible socio economic toll and emotional crisis people are in. If you heard the stories of real life hardship due to no jobs, higher food costs, higher gas prices, low wage part time employment you would take a second look at the lack of accomplishment of this administration. I am not here to take sides, just stating the observable facts of every day people in the US. It is deplorable what has happened to this country. Hope? We used to be the land of opportunity and everyone wanted to be successful and wealthy. This notion is what made us the leader of the free world. Now all you hear is disgust, envy and jealousy for people who bust their rear to be independent and self sufficient. What has happened to America?

    October 18, 2012 06:16 am at 6:16 am |
  17. Holly

    Bright pink is also the color to show your support for Planned Parenthood.

    October 18, 2012 06:43 am at 6:43 am |
  18. GI Joe

    Ann's hair looks like she just got out of bed.

    October 18, 2012 07:06 am at 7:06 am |
  19. myway

    Ooohh, I can't wait until this campaign is over. Who cares what they're wearing. No one cares what the men are wearing, except if they fail to display a flag pin. Pathetic. I'm sure foreign dignitaries are impressed by the detailed campaign issues we are spending time on. More proof the presidential campaign is way too long.

    October 18, 2012 07:17 am at 7:17 am |
  20. gramma nance

    Thumbs up to both of them for wearing pink...but Michelle wore it better!

    October 18, 2012 07:40 am at 7:40 am |
  21. suzanne

    rae small minded

    October 18, 2012 07:48 am at 7:48 am |
  22. mikithinks

    Wow, jobs, equal pay, women running home to cook dinner, and we are talking about the shades of pink worn by two women not even running for office. Shame.

    October 18, 2012 08:17 am at 8:17 am |
  23. Don

    Good to see partisanship put aside for a good cause. It would be nice if the policies from each party matched too. Peoples health should not be a partisan issue

    October 18, 2012 08:24 am at 8:24 am |
  24. VMG

    I think both woman looked great. maybe we should hear the wives debate. I find it somewhat unsettlling that people are scoring the debate by the presentation or body language of Obama and Romney rather than what they are actually saying. It's hard to believe that there are still undecided voters after all that's been said and printed. Maybe if you're still undecided at this point you should stay home and let the voters who have listed to both candidates make an educated decision on who should run this country.

    October 18, 2012 08:29 am at 8:29 am |
  25. Middle Class Independent Swing State Voter

    Lets lay off the candidates wives and stick to the real issues please. I'm an Obama supporter and I think both ladies looked lovely last night. Next topic....

    October 18, 2012 08:29 am at 8:29 am |
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