[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/10/21/art.palinnv1021.ap.jpg caption="Gov. Palin appealed to women voters in Nevada Tuesday."]
HENDERSON, Nevada (CNN) - Flanked by a quintet of former Hillary Clinton supporters, Sarah Palin on Tuesday made her most direct appeal to female voters since kicking off her vice presidential campaign in August.
With polls showing Palin's unfavorable ratings among women rising over the last month, the Alaska governor looked to tap into any lingering tensions left over from the drawn-out Democratic primary battle - a fight that left many Clinton supporters disappointed.
"Our opponents think that they have the women's vote all locked up, which is a little presumptuous," Palin said. "Little presumptuous, since only our side has a woman on the ticket."
"You've got to ask yourself, why was Senator Hillary Clinton not even vetted by the Obama campaign? Why did it take 24 years, an entire generation from the time Geraldine Ferraro made her pioneering bid, until the next time that a woman was asked to join a national ticket?"
Palin spoke glowingly of Clinton in the early days of her campaign, but mentions of the New York senator elicited boos from her heavily-Republican crowds. She soon dropped the references from her stump speech.
On Tuesday, the Republican vice presidential nominee continued to attack Obama's tax plan, arguing that his plan to raise takes on wealthier Americans will stifle the earning power of working women.
"Women want the same opportunities as men," she said. "And they're entitled to the same rewards. See, the point here, the point here is that women would suffer just as much from the massive tax increase that Senator Obama proposes."
Palin knocked Obama for supporting equal pay on the campaign trail while paying his female senate staffers, on average, lower salaries than the men in his office. Female staffers in Obama's Senate office earn 83 cents to every dollar earned by male staffers, while McCain's female Senate staffers, on average, earn more.
"Does he think that the women aren't working as hard?," Palin asked. "Does he think that they are 17 percent less productive?"
The statistics cited by Palin, however, do not account for the fact that McCain's office currently has more women in higher-paying senior positions than does Obama's office, thereby driving up the average female salary among McCain staffers. The Obama team has said the situation is a different on the Democrat's presidential campaign, where many of his top advisors are women.
The governor was joined onstage by former Clinton supporters Lynn Forester de Rothschild, Prameela Bartholomeusz, Linda Klinge, Shelly Mandel and Elaine Lafferty, all of whom applauded as Palin criticized Obama.