Girls Just Wanna Have Equal Rights

Women are being targeted in this Presidential election because they vote more often than men.  Recently, polls have showed that suburban women are switching their vote from Obama to Romney. One possible reason would be the issue of pro life vs. pro choice. However, we don’t really have a true-blue pro-life candidate. Gov. Romney was Pro-Choice when he needed to be, running as Governor of the most liberal state of Massachusetts.   In the Republican Primary, when he needed the conservatives, he was strongly Pro-Life, with no exceptions for rape, incest or the life of the mother.  Romney said that he would be “delighted to overturn Roe vs. Wade”.   In the General Election, when he needs moderates, Gov. Romney is now saying that he differs with his Vice Presidential candidate Paul Ryan, who has consistently voted Pro-Life with no exceptions.   Gov. Romney said that women should vote for him because he will provide them jobs.

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He had “binders full of women” while he was In Massachusetts.  He did have 25% of his administration filled with top-level women.  He tells us that he went out looking for those women.  However, Mass Gap, Massachusetts Government Appointments Project, a group of 130 women’s groups, tells us that they actually went to him and implored him to appoint women.   Still, the Gov. did appoint women.  However, as President, he refuses to commit to the Paycheck Fairness Act that is on hold in Congress.  It would make it easier for women to report paycheck discrimination.    When asked about his position, he said:  “I’ll get back to you.”  We know that Paul Ryan voted against the Lily Ledbetter Fair Pay Act when he had the opportunity in Congress.  This was Pres. Obama’s first piece of major legislation.

Lily Ledbetter was a manager at Goodyear Tires, and she found out that the male managers were making more money.  The Supreme Court agreed that she was discriminated, but wrote that she should have reported it within six months.  Pres. Obama changed the law so women can claim discrimination whenever they find out about the discrimination.   Lily Ledbetter pointed out that when women are paid only 77 cents for every dollar a man makes, it not only impacts her, it impacts her family.  It can mean a better quality of life for her or her family, an education for a child, and it can mean a better retirement.   A White House study (whitehouse.gov, 6/4/2012) found:  “Over the course of her career, a typical woman working full time in the U.S. will lose $431,000 because of the Gender Pay Gap.”

Reproductive rights are being decreased in numerous ways in numerous states.  Pennsylvania has called for intravaginal probe ultrasound for any woman who wants to get an abortion.  When our Republican Governor was questioned about this, he said:  “The woman can look away from the monitor screen if she doesn’t want to see.”  Pres. Obama has expressed his outrage at these measures.  Yet, Gov. Romney has not spoken out against them.   Pres. Obama has preserved a women’s right to choose by appointing two liberal judges to the Supreme Court.  If Gov. Romney gets elected, he has already told us that he would overturn Roe vs. Wade; and he will appoint a conservative judge to the Supreme Court who will do this for him.

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The Republicans are upset when the Democrats say that there is a Republican War Against Women, Democrats aren’t the first to say that.  It is the title of a book by Tanya Melch.  She was a Republican delegate to the Republican National Convention in 1992 who found herself  “angered and disillusioned” by the direction her party had taken.    That war continues today, and I argue that the war is escalating from not supporting equal pay (Only 7 Republicans voted for the passage of the Lily Ledbetter Fair Pay Act and 203  Republicans voted against it.) to the limits being placed on women’s reproductive rights.

-Lauren Harris

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About rowlanda12

This is a blog about the 2012 presidential election. Content is generated by students in Professor Heldman's Politics 101 class. She does not necessarily endorse the views expressed here.
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