Gender gap continues to dog Romney

April 11, 2012 at 4:43 PM
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WASHINGTON, April 11 (UPI) -- The Romney campaign had an opportunity to pick up support from women voters Wednesday but choked when reporters asked about equal pay for women.

Instead of saying whether Romney supported the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, which expanded the right to sue over equal pay for women doing the same jobs as men, resetting with a 180-day window to sue after receiving each discriminatory paycheck, a Romney adviser told a conference call, "We'll get back to you on that," The Hill reported.

President Barack Obama signed the landmark legislation shortly after taking office in 2009 and an ABC-Washington Post poll released Tuesday showed Obama with a nearly 20-point lead over Romney among women voters.

Romney has accused Obama of policies that have made the economy worse for working women, The Hill said, but his policy adviser and an economic adviser couldn't come up with specifics to back up the claim Tuesday that the president had turned the clock back 20 years on women's rights.

"Because it [the economic downturn] lasted longer, more and more women have lost jobs," Romney said Wednesday at a female-owned graphics company in Hartford, Conn. "His failures have hurt women."

The Romney campaign said 92 percent of job losses under Obama had been women but had no answer when asked what the former Massachusetts governor would have done differently to help women in the labor force, The Hill reported.

Later, the campaign issued a e-mail saying the Republican supported equal pay and would not seek repeal of the Ledbetter Fair Pay Act.

"Of course Mitt Romney supports pay equity for women," said Romney spokeswoman Amanda Henneberg. "The real question is whether President Obama supports jobs for women."

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