With eye on female voters, Wasserman Schultz, Obama mark Title IX anniversary

Lawmakers and President Obama on Saturday celebrated the 40th anniversary of Title IX, which ensured equal rights for men and women in education.

Obama and other Democrats marking the occasion didn’t mention politics, but the coordinated effort seemed aimed at 2012 voters, particularly women.

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Democrats all year have been doing everything they can to create a gender gap between Obama and his presumptive GOP opponent this fall, Mitt Romney.

“From addressing inequality in math and science education to preventing sexual assault on campus to fairly funding athletic programs, Title IX ensures equality for our young people in every aspect of their education,” President Barack Obama wrote in a Newsweek op-ed published Saturday. “It’s a springboard for success.”

Democratic National Committee chairman Debbie Wasserman Shultz also released a statement calling Title IX “a powerful tool for women’s advancements in education.”

Wasserman Shultz also highlighted the first law signed by the president —the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, which aims to bring about equal pay for women — to emphasize Obama’s commitment to gender equality.

She then added a personal note about the law’s importance to her family.

“As a mother of two girls myself, it is especially important to me that our daughters have all the same opportunities as our sons —and on this important anniversary we should celebrate all the progress we’ve made and recommit ourselves to the work ahead,” Shultz said in a statement.

Obama also mentioned his daughters in his op-ed.

Other Democrats celebrated the anniversary of Title IX act through social media, including Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.), Rep. Shelley Berkley (D-Nev.) and Rep. Russ Carnahan (D-Miss.). Reid posted on Facebook that Title IX is “one of the best things that ever happened to girls in America.”

“40 yrs ago, #TitleIX was signed. It doesn’t just = equality in sports, but in all educational pursuits,” Carnahan tweeted. “We’ve come far, but still more 2 do.”