Columbus — The head of the Democratic National Committee urged a group of Ohio women Friday to support Democratic candidates in November.
“This state needs a shower,” Florida Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz told supporters. “And our candidates are that shower. Our candidates are the breath of fresh air.”
Wasserman Shultz was the featured speaker during what was billed as a roundtable discussion of women’s issues at Ohio Democratic Party headquarters in Columbus.
She was joined by gubernatorial hopeful Ed FitzGerald and his running mate, Sharen Neuhardt; secretary of state candidate Nina Turner; state treasurer candidate Connie Pillich; and other Democratic lawmakers.
They focused much of their discussion on law changes and policies adopted by Gov. John Kasich, Republican lawmakers and other statewide elected officials that they say are making it more difficult for Ohioans to vote and gain medical attention.
They pointed to abortion restrictions (mandated checks for fetal heartbeats and a move to defund Planned Parenthood, for example), opposition to increasing the minimum wage and a refusal by Republicans to move legislation to ensure women earn equal pay for equal work.
“We have to ban together,” Wasserman Shultz told the women on hand for the June 27 session “We have to make sure, as women and as Democrats, that we never again go through a 2010 election — 2010 was a nightmare. We’ve watched that movie, and we’ve seen the ending, and I never want to see it again.”
She added, “We have to focus on making sure that women understand what’s at stake in this election, and that’s on all of us … We all have to make sure that we’re doing our part.”
But Chris Schrimpf, spokesman for the Ohio Republican Party, countered the assertions.
In a released statement, he offered, “One of the most important ways to improve the lives of women and all Ohioans is to create a stronger, more prosperous Ohio. Since Republicans took office over 250,000 jobs have been created improving the lives of thousands of Ohio families. Republicans were also the first to put dedicated state funding toward rape crisis centers and under Gov. Kasich 130,000 women have gained access to health care, cancer screenings and prenatal care.”
Marc Kovac is the Dix Capital Bureau Chief. Email him at email@example.com or on Twitter at OhioCapitalBlog.