KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations.

Health Law Key To Obama Campaign’s Outreach To Women Voters

Late last week, the president and his deputies were linking parts of the health law and economic opportunities as part of their effort to draw support from women voters. At the same time, The Associated Press reports on the challenges GOP presidential hopeful Mitt Romney faces in his attempts to bridge the gender gap.

The Hill: Obama Touts Health Care Law As Part Of Outreach To Women
President Obama is making his health care reform law a centerpiece of his outreach to women voters ahead of November's election. The president and his lieutenants repeatedly referred to provisions of the health care law during Friday's White House Forum on Women and the Economy, hoping to draw a sharp distinction against the Republican presidential candidates who have all vowed to repeal the law. Obama commands far more support from women than Mitt Romney -- he leads Romney by 18 percent among female voters in 12 key swing states, according to a USA Today/Gallup poll released this week -- and the administration has kept up its attacks against a so-called "Republican war on women" since controversy over the law's contraception mandate erupted in February (Pecquet, 4/6).

Kaiser Health News: Capsules: Obama Ties Women's Economic Future To Health Law
President Barack Obama brought together Friday two of his biggest campaign issues, health care and the economy, in an appeal to women voters, who have favored the president over GOP rivals in recent polls. During remarks at a White House forum on women and the economy, Obama described how provisions of the 2010 health law have helped break barriers for women in the workforce (Torres, 4/6).

Politico Pro: ACA Will Help Level The Playing Field
HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius told a roundtable of women supporters of health reform Friday that the Affordable Care Act will level the health insurance playing field for women -- and defended the contraception coverage mandate as a critical step toward that goal. In a breakout session at the White House forum on Women and the Economy, Sebelius said that being a woman will "no longer be a pre-existing condition" (Norman, 4/6).

The Associated Press: Challenges Facing Romney In Wooing Female Voters
Mitt Romney is starting to hone his appeal to female voters, acutely aware as he turns to the general election that he has little choice but to narrow President Barack Obama's commanding lead among this critical constituency. ... Romney must overcome history, political math and the missteps of a party that picked a fight over one provision of Obama's health care law and ended up on the defensive over access to birth control. Romney also has work to do with female voters after inconsistencies or misstatements on issues such as abortion and the future of Planned Parenthood (Kellman, 4/7).

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