By David Eggert, Associated Press
LANSING (AP) – Michigan candidates for statewide office tried to woo women voters Tuesday with a top Democrat accusing Gov. Rick Snyder of failing to stop Republican “attacks” on women and the GOP governor highlighting stories of successful female leaders.READ MORE: Michigan's Aidan Hutchinson Named Heisman Trophy Finalist
Lisa Brown, running mate to Democratic gubernatorial candidate Mark Schauer, specifically faulted Snyder for not supporting stalled legislation that would prohibit employers from paying men and women differently for comparable work.
“From Rick Snyder we get nothing but indifference toward the fact that women make 75 cents for every dollar that a man makes,” she told a crowd at an event in Lansing with U.S. Sen. Debbie Stabenow and state Senate Democratic Leader Gretchen Whitmer.
It was among three stops they made across the state to also criticize Republicans such as U.S. Senate candidate Terri Lynn Land and Attorney General Bill Schuette on women’s issues.
The strategy mirrors what Democrats are emphasizing nationally — pay equity, birth control and the right to abortion — in an attempt to rally women increasingly important to their election hopes. An EPIC-MRA poll conducted Sept. 25-29 showed Snyder and Democratic Senate candidate Gary Peters leading among both men and women over Schauer and Land.
Snyder, in Grand Rapids for the second of three “Women Strengthening Michigan” events this week, brought attention to businesswoman and other female leaders, including two in his cabinet — the first-ever women to oversee the State Police and the state Department of Agriculture and Rural Development.
He said he wants to make sure his two daughters have the same opportunity as his son, and that all women and children see opportunities for themselves.
Asked about Brown’s criticism on the pay equity issue, Snyder spokeswoman Sara Wurfel said he issued a proclamation in August saying the state is committed to the principle of equal pay and eliminating any gender bias in compensation.READ MORE: Sabrina Spellman Makes An Appearance On The CW's Riverdale; Kiernan Shipka Reveals 'Fans Will Get Some Clarity'
Republican Rep. Lisa Posthumus Lyons, who moderated a panel discussion with Snyder and women, said in a statement that Snyder and GOP lawmakers are focused on growing jobs and women as a result are “getting ahead in better careers.”
Also Tuesday, Brown mistakenly accused Snyder of never explaining why he vetoed proposed restrictions on abortion coverage in Michigan’s public and private health insurance plans.
When he vetoed the legislation in 2012, Snyder cited concerns about government overreach in requiring supplemental policies for abortion coverage in private plans and a lack of exceptions for cases of rape and incest and when a woman’s health is at risk. A year later, the Republican-led Legislature effectively overrode the veto by passing an initiative sponsored by anti-abortion group Right to Life of Michigan.
In response to a question from The Associated Press about whether it was fair to lump Snyder in with other Republicans since he opposed the abortion insurance law, Brown insisted that Snyder did not give his reasons for vetoing the bill. But Snyder had laid out his arguments at the time in a veto letter to legislators and an open letter to Michigan residents.
Brown accused Snyder of not aggressively speaking out against the subsequent Right to Life legislation. At the time, the governor said he did not think the bill was appropriate.
“He did not come out and say, ‘This is wrong for Michigan. This is wrong for Michigan’s women,” Brown said.
Wurfel countered that Brown’s statements are “another example where claims very clearly don’t match facts or reality.”MORE NEWS: Farmington Hills Police, Fire Department Participate In Toys For Tots Drive
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