KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

In Colorado, Obama Focuses On Women’s Health Issues

Campaigning in the western swing state, President Barack Obama said his opponent, GOP presidential hopeful Mitt Romney, would take women's health care back to the 1950s.

The New York Times: Obama Assails Romney On Women's Health Care
President Obama made one of his strongest pitches to date for the women's vote, which is crucial to his re-election, telling a mostly female crowd of 4,000 here on Wednesday that Republicans led by Mitt Romney would take them back to the era of the 1950s (Calmes, 8/9).

The Associated Press: Obama: Romney Would Take Health Care Back To 1950s
Seeking to rally a crucial constituency, President Barack Obama on Wednesday warned women in swing-state Colorado that Republicans would seek to strip away health care benefits for them and cut funding for contraceptive services. In a passionate pitch for his health care overhaul, Obama sought to draw a stark contrast with presumptive GOP nominee Mitt Romney, saying his rival intended to take his health care law and "kill it dead" on the first day of his presidency and "get rid" of Planned Parenthood (8/8).

Los Angeles Times: Obama: Romney 'More Suited To The 1950s' On Women's Health
Obama's remarks at a community college in Denver were tailored to woo women voters, a critical part of his base, and included a full-throated appeal based on policy and personality. Obama spoke of his single mother who raised him and died of cancer in her 50s, as well as his wife and daughters. He was introduced by Sandra Fluke, the former Georgetown law student who last spring found herself at the center of the debate over birth control coverage and religious freedom (Hennessey, 8/8).

The Wall Street Journal: Campaigns Put Focus On Suburban Women
The battle for suburban women, the archetypal swing voting bloc, is on. On most days, President Barack Obama talks about taxes, the economy and the middle class. But he is running a parallel campaign, aimed at suburban women, which focuses on contraception, abortion and the health-care law (Meckler and Lippman, 8/8).

CNN: Obama Focuses On Women's Issues In Denver
Standing under a sign reading "Women's Health Security," Obama was surrounded by female supporters onstage at the Auraria Event Center and used his remarks to repeatedly criticize likely GOP nominee Mitt Romney for failing to stand up for the issues important to women. "Mr. Romney is running as the candidate of conservative values. There's nothing conservative about a government that prevents a woman from making her own health care decisions," the president said to a predominantly female crowd of 4,000 people near downtown Denver (Brittian, Aigner-Treworgy, 8/8).

Politico: Obama Gives Full-Throated Defense Of Health Care Law
President Barack Obama on Wednesday used women’s health as the platform for an all-out defense of his health care reform law, calling it the right thing to do and accusing Republicans of trying to take the law's benefits away from women (Haberkorn, 8/8).

The Hill: Obama, Romney Campaigns Both Tout Controversial Health Care Records
Healthcare is usually seen as a big liability for both President Obama and Mitt Romney, but both campaigns chose to put the issue front and center Wednesday. President Obama touted his healthcare law in a campaign speech just hours after the Romney campaign highlighted Romney’s record as governor of Massachusetts. Both campaigns were departing from their normal scripts — and from the advice of pundits and strategists who see both candidates’ healthcare records as weaknesses (Baker, 8/8).

Denver Post: President Pushes Women's Health Care During Two Colorado Stops
President Barack Obama warned cheering crowds of thousands Wednesday in Denver and Grand Junction that Republican opponent Mitt Romney would return the country to the failed policies of a decade ago and rewind women's health care coverage back to the 1950s. Obama noted that the first bill he signed when he got into office was to help ensure that women are paid the same as men for equal work and that he has appointed two women to the U.S. Supreme Court (Lofholm, Lee and Burnett, 8/9).

And, in news related to the Missouri Senate campaign -

The Associated Press/Washington Post: Missouri Senate Race Tilts Toward The Extreme As McCaskill And Akin Highlight Stark Contrasts
Within hours of Akin winning the Republican nomination, McCaskill was casting him as a conservative extremist who would jeopardize seniors’ health care and retirement savings while putting college out of reach for all but the rich. Akin countered by portraying McCaskill — one of the most vulnerable Democratic incumbents in the nation — as a budget-busting, tax-hiking, big-spending liberal (8/8).

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