Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Will 'War on Women' messaging work for Ed FitzGerald and Democrats in 2014? Analysis

Abortion is a medical issue, women’s rights issue, family issue and moral issue. And early in this year’s race for Ohio governor, it is the issue.

Democrats and their likely candidate, Cuyahoga County Executive Ed FitzGerald, have made it so with their moves and their messaging in the first weeks of 2014.

The state party’s new ground game coordinator spent 2013 in Virginia, where she assisted a winning gubernatorial bid that emphasized the Republican candidate’s hardline positions on abortion. FitzGerald’s new running mate, Sharen Neuhardt, ran twice for Congress but is known as well in political circles for being an abortion-rights activist.

And with Neuhardt on the ticket, the Democratic statewide slate chose for its first group appearance an endorsement event at Planned Parenthood Advocates of Ohio.

The pieces weave together to form a “War on Women” narrative against Republican Gov. John Kasich. But the strategy brings some risks and no promise of rewards.

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