Obama bashes Romney, GOP as ‘being in a time machine’ on women’s issues

{mosads}Earlier Friday, House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) looked to frame the president’s comments as politically driven.

now, now we are going to have a fight over women’s health,” Boehner
said. “Give me a break. This is the latest plank in the so-called war on
women. Entirely created, entirely created by my colleagues across the
aisle for political gain.”

But Obama believed the issue had traction, declaring “the days of
male politicians controlling the health care decisions of our wives, and
our mothers, and our daughters and our sisters” needed to end.

“As long as I’m President, we are going to keep moving forward,” Obama
said. “You can count on that.  You don’t have to take my word on it –
you’ve got my signature on it.  Because something like standing up for
the principle of equal pay for equal work isn’t something I’m going to
have to ‘get back to you on’ – it’s the first law I signed.”

That comment was a direct swipe at Republican challenger Mitt
Romney, whose advisers generated headlines earlier this month when they
didn’t immediately signal whether the former governor supported the
Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act. Obama heralded the legislation — the first
he signed as president — during the address, and gave a shout out to
Ledbetter, who was in attendance.

The president sought to use the legislation as a rebuttal to
Romney’s charge that women have suffered economically under the current
administration. Earlier this month Romney said “the real war on women is
being waged by the President’s failed economic policies,” and argued
that a disproportionate number of women have lost their jobs since Obama
took office.

But Obama said issues like health care and fair pay affected women and their families economically.

women make less than men for the same work, that hurts families who
have to get by with less and businesses who have fewer customers with
less to spend.  When a job doesn’t offer family leave to care for a new
baby or sick leave to care for an ailing parent, that burdens men too,”
Obama said.

The president went on to argue that Republican objections to funding
for Planned Parenthood and the reauthorization of the Violence Against
Women Act further emphasized the divide.

“When something like the
Violence Against Women Act is up for debate, then we know something is
haywire. That’s something that should be beyond politics,” Obama said,
noting the legislation “once passed by large bipartisan margins.”

But the president also looked to repair damage done by Democratic
adviser Hilary Rosen, who drew condemnation from both sides of the aisle
when she suggested Romney’s wife, Ann, had “never worked a day in her
life.” That turned into an embarrassment for the Obama campaign, and the
president looked to signal his sympathy for women juggling complex
families early in his remarks.

“Once Michelle and I had our girls we had to balance raising a
family and having a career. And it was tough on me, but let’s face it,
it was tougher on her,” Obama said.

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