Starting Tuesday, the Democratic convention here will feature speeches from Planned Parenthood Action Fund President Cecile Richards, NARAL President Nancy Keenan and Georgetown Law student Sandra Fluke, who became a flashpoint in the debate over requiring Catholic institutions to pay for birth control.
But don’t expect them to focus on abortion — or even necessarily use the word. Instead, they’ll defend President Barack Obama’s record on reproductive health and reproductive rights. And, as they have before, they’ll accuse GOP nominee Mitt Romney and his party of waging a “war on women.”
Obama’s significant lead among women has given him a slight edge in most national and swing-state polls. Republicans attempted to beat back Democratic attacks last week in Tampa — both Ann and Mitt Romney made specific appeals to women — but Democrats believe they’ve got the clear advantage going into November.
To keep and strengthen its standing, the party has recast its rhetoric on abortion rights. Polls consistently show that a majority of Americans favor at least some abortion restrictions. So Democrats have made the contentious issue part of a larger conversation about women’s health — and that, in turn, is part of a larger conversation that depicts Republicans as opposed to equal pay and access to education for women.