Political parties lobby the ladies for voter support

There’s power in the color pink for Rep. Bobby Schilling’s campaign.

“I think the women of the Illinois 17th District have pretty much had enough,” said Rep. Schilling, (R) Illinois.

That’s why nearly 30 Schilling supporters wear pink “Women for Bobby” t-shirts on Monday morning. There are high stakes for the mission at hand. Women are front and center this election.

“There isn’t a single issue that is not a women’s issue,” said Christie Schilling, the congressman’s wife. “Bobby’s worked really hard.”

Not far away in Davenport, local grower Cathy Lafrenz shows a small business connection to President Obama.

For this campaign, women’s issues are America’s issues.

“It’s going to be huge,” Lafrenz said. “The women’s vote carries so much importance in Iowa, too.”

While the Obama campaign is making a big effort to court women votes, it’s a bit more complicated in Congressman Schilling’s race. That’s because his opponent, Cheri Bustos, is a woman.

But gender isn’t the main issue for Schilling supporter Brandi Anderson. It’s the economy that concerns her the most.

“Women shouldn’t have to decide if they want to fill their gas tank or feed their family,” she said. “It’s a big concern.”

“The women are paying attention to this campaign,” Rep. Schilling added. “And the women know what the other side is doing.”

Back at Women for Obama, it’s a time to strategize. Their work isn’t done. They’re looking ahead.

“Women before didn’t show much interest in politics,” Women for Obama Coordinator Judy Voss said. “And now they have a lot going for them. A lot rides on who they vote for this year.”

Both parties are using websites, live events and social media sites to reach women voters.

For Democrats and Republicans, lobbying the ladies could make the difference this November.

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