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The Big Fail: Obama's Record On Women

- August 8, 2012

Obama Will Appear With Sandra Fluke In Denver, But He'll Have To Do More Than That To Appeal To Women Voters Hurt By His Economy

 

SANDRA FLUKE WILL ACCOMPANY OBAMA AT TODAY'S CAMPAIGN EVENT

Today, Sandra Fluke Will Introduce Obama At His Denver Campaign Stop. "In case you needed further proof of the importance of the women's vote in Colorado this election - and that the Obama campaign is following the 2010 roadmap of U.S. Sen. Michael Bennet - word comes that Sandra Fluke will introduce President Obama at his Denver campaign stop." (Sara Burnett, "Sandra Fluke To Introduce Obama In Denver," The Denver Post's " The Spot," 8/6/12)

"The Legions Of Unmarried Women Who Helped Lift Mr. Obama To Victory In 2008" Are Up For Grabs In 2012. "As much as Ms. Sheradin is up for grabs in this election, so too are the legions of unmarried women who helped lift Mr. Obama to victory in 2008. Single women are one of the country's fastest-growing demographic groups - there are 1.8 million more now than just two years ago. They make up a quarter of the voting-age population nationally, and even more in several swing states, including Nevada." (Shaila Dewan, "In Weak Economy, An Opening To Court Votes Of Single Women," The New York Times , 8/7/12)

"In Several Interviews, Women Of Various Political Stripes Said They Believed That The President Could Do Little To Help Them Personally, Or Bolster Prosperity In General." (Shaila Dewan, "In Weak Economy, An Opening To Court Votes Of Single Women," The New York Times , 8/7/12)

WOMEN HAVE NOT FARED WELL IN OBAMA'S ECONOMY

Since President Obama Took Office, The Unemployment Rate For Women Has Increased From 7.0 Percent To 8.1 Percent. (Bureau Of Labor Statistics, Accessed 8/3/12)

  • Since Obama Took Office, The Number Of Unemployed Women Has Increased By 860,000 To 5.9 Million (5,865,000). (Bureau Of Labor Statistics, Accessed 8/3/12)

Since Obama Took Office, The Unemployment Rate For Women Between 20 And 24 Years Old Has Increased From 10.3 Percent To 11.7 Percent. (Bureau Of Labor Statistics, Accessed 8/3/12)

  • Since Obama Took Office, The Number Of Unemployed Women Between 20 And 24 Years Old Has Increased By 121,000 To 851,000. (Bureau Of Labor Statistics, Accessed 8/3/12)

Single Women "Have Not Fared Well During The Obama Administration." "In an election focused on the economy, single women present a complicated case. They already earn less than married people and single men, and they have not fared well during the Obama administration. They have had a harder time than married women paying rent, getting medical care and finding jobs. While the jobless rate for married women has stayed relatively low, at 5.6 percent compared with 2.6 percent before the recession, the rate for unmarried women has risen to 11 percent, from a prerecession level of 6 percent." (Shaila Dewan, "In Weak Economy, An Opening To Court Votes Of Single Women," The New York Times , 8/7/12)

Los Angeles Times Headline: "Newly Created Jobs Go Mostly To Men." (Don Lee, "Newly Created Jobs Go Mostly To Men," Los Angeles Times, 7/15/12)

THE WHITE HOUSE IS A HOSTILE WORK ENVIRONMENT FOR WOMEN

An Unnamed High-Ranking Female Official: Obama "Has A Real Woman Problem." "'The president has a real woman problem,' an unnamed high-ranking female official told Suskind. 'The idea of the boys' club being just Larry and Rahm isn't really fair. He [Obama] was just as responsible himself.'" (Nia-Malika Henderson and Peter Wallsten, "Book: Women In Obama White House Felt Excluded And Ignored," The Washington Post , 9/16/11)

In Obama White House's "Rough-And-Tumble Environment … Female Staff Members Often Felt Bruised." "In this rough-and-tumble environment, the book reports, female staff members often felt bruised. At a dinner with Mr. Obama in November 2009, several top female aides - including Anita Dunn, who was the communications director, and Christina Romer, the chairwoman of the Council of Economic Advisers - told the president about being talked over in meetings by male colleagues or cut out altogether." (Mark Landler, "Book Details Dissension In Obama Economic Team," The New York Times, 9/15/11)

  • Dee Dee Myers, Former Clinton Press Secretary: "Women Are Obama's Base, And They Don't Seem To Have Enough People Who Look Like The Base Inside Of Their Own Inner Circle." "'Women are Obama's base, and they don't seem to have enough people who look like the base inside of their own inner circle,' said Dee Dee Myers, a former press secretary in the Clinton administration whose sister, Betsy, served as the Obama campaign's chief operating officer." (Mark Leibovich, "Man's World At The White House? No Harm, No Foul, Aides Say," The New York Times, 10/24/09)

According To Valerie Jarrett, "Early On, Some Women Did Not Have A Direct Relationship With The President." "'Early on, some women did not have a direct relationship with the president,' she [Valerie Jarrett] said later. 'I felt direct interaction, where they could speak freely, would help.' The first lady did not attend, but she was an invisible presence: for years, she had urged her husband to open himself up to a more diverse array of advisers, including by gender, and she quietly let it be known that she thought the story raised important questions." (Jodi Kantor, The Obamas, 2012, p. 147)

Some Women, "Like Romer, Felt Strongly That They Were Excluded From An Internal Boys' Club." "The attendees couldn't quite tell if Obama really wanted to be there. He began by glancing at his watch and effectively said, okay, we have this much time, according to one attendee. That's how he was, always on schedule, always crossing an item off his to-do list, rarely falling into open-ended conversations. 'Are there genuine concerns that I need to know about?' the president asked, looking around the table. There were, although not exactly the ones he may have expected. The women were divided on how necessary the gathering was from a pure gender point of view. A few, like Romer, felt strongly that they were excluded from an internal boys' club, but others were indifferent: they had been around Washington a long time, risen to powerful positions, and did not care who the president invited to play golf. As the women went around the table, taking turns speaking, they did not exactly cut loose. 'It was an awkward, silent dinner where we were given one glass of wine and a piece of fish,' one participant said. But many of them agreed on a more central concern." (Jodi Kantor, The Obamas, 2012, p. 147)

  • Former Economic Advisor Christina Romer: "I Felt Like A Piece Of Meat." "'I felt like a piece of meat,' Christina Romer, former head of the Council of Economic Advisers, said of one meeting in which Suskind writes she was 'boxed out' by Summers." (Nia-Malika Henderson, "Book: Women In Obama White House Felt Excluded And Ignored," The Washington Post , 9/16/11)

"The Notion That Women Have Long Been 'The Heart Of The Obama Organization' Doesn't Necessarily Line Up With The President's Largely Male List Of Political Advisers And Senior Staff." (Alexander Burns, "Women For Obama," Politico, 11/15/11)

  • Anita Dunn: Obama's Problems With Women Began During His 2008 Campaign. " Dunn told Suskind that the problems began during the 2008 campaign. At one point she was viewing a television ad with other campaign officials and was shocked to see no women in the spot. 'There isn't a single woman in this ad,' Dunn said. 'I was dumbfounded. It wasn't like they were being deliberately sexist. It's just there was no one offering a female perspective.'" (Nia-Malika Henderson and Peter Wallsten, "Book: Women In Obama White House Felt Excluded And Ignored," The Washington Post , 9/16/11)

Obama Is "Responsible For A Work Atmosphere That Marginalizes And Ignores Women." "Coverage in the Washington Post and a new book by Ron Suskind has focused attention on the frustration of Obama's female advisers. But the problem has been obvious almost since Obama took office. And while the explanations so far have blamed members of the mostly-departed boys club-Robert Gibbs, Rahm Emanuel-Obama himself is responsible for a work atmosphere that marginalizes and ignores women." (Amy Sullivan, "The White House Boys' Club: President Obama Has A Woman Problem," Time's "Swampland," 9/21/11)

Former Communications Director Anita Dunn: "This Place Would Be In Court For A Hostile Workplace." (Nia-Malika Henderson, "Book: Women In Obama White House Felt Excluded And Ignored," The Washington Post , 9/16/11)

  • Dunn: "It Actually Fit All Of The Classic Legal Requirements For A Genuinely Hostile Workplace To Women." (Nia-Malika Henderson, "Book: Women In Obama White House Felt Excluded And Ignored," The Washington Post , 9/16/11)

White House Female Employees Earn 18 Percent Less Than Their Male Colleagues. " Amid the Republicans' alleged 'war on women,' female employees in the Obama White House earn considerably less than their male colleagues, records show. According to the 2011 report compiled by the White House, female employees earned a median annual salary of $60,000, which was about 18 percent less than the median salary for male employees ($71,000)." (Kenric Ward, "Barack Obama's White House Pays Women 18 Percent Less Than Men," Sunshine State News, 4/12/12)


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