Clinton, Obama to address women's forum

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Hillary Clinton and President Obama plan to both address a women's forum hosted by the Democratic National Committee next month in Washington, in an event certain to fuel speculation that the former secretary of State is readying a presidential bid.

Both Clinton and Obama are scheduled to speak on Sept. 19, according to a schedule obtained by CNN. 

First lady Michelle Obama is slated to address the welcome reception for the event the prior day. The forum is expected to be the first public appearance between the president and the former first lady since a flap over critical comments Clinton made about Obama’s foreign policy in Syria earlier this month.

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Clinton said Obama’s restrained approach to the civil war in Syria had created a vacuum that enabled the rise of Sunni extremists now targeting minorities in Iraq.

Clinton also knocked Obama’s “don’t do stupid stuff” foreign policy mantra, saying, “great nations need organizing principles.”

A spokesman for Clinton subsequently said the remarks were not intended as an attack on Obama and that she and Obama would "hug it out" at a private birthday party they attended during the president's vacation on Martha's Vineyard.

Other speakers at the women's event include DNC Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-Fla.), Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) and the leaders of advocacy organizations such as Planned Parenthood, EMILY's List and the Center for American Progress.

Tickets to the event will range in price from $25 to $32,400. The top-priced ticket buys attendees access to a welcome reception with the first lady and two photo lines.

Women provided a crucial boost in the president’s 2012 re-election bid, breaking for him by a 55-44 percent margin on Election Day. By contrast, men chose Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney 52-45 percent. In Ohio, Obama won women by 12 points, while in Pennsylvania, women favored the president by 16 points.

The White House has looked to again rally female voters ahead of the 2014 midterms, with the president touting equal pay and a series of administration forums where officials solicited ideas about how to help women in the workplace.

Last week, the White House announced new regulations designed to preserve free contraception for women who work for employers who object to purchasing insurance plans with birth control coverage.  

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