WASHINGTON (AP) - Democratic and Republican Senators are pouring significant time and energy into pursuing female voters, a coveted prize in the Nov. 4 elections.
Wednesday's Senate vote on contraception legislation is the latest example of Democrats' win-by-losing strategy, which forces Republicans to vote on sensitive matters that might rile women this fall.
Recent votes on "pay equity" and family leave issues were similarly aimed at women, who are increasingly crucial to Democrats' election hopes, and therefore worrisome to Republicans. Any shift in women's typical turnout or Democratic tilt this fall could determine tight elections, especially for the Senate.
Republicans need to gain six Senate seats to control the chamber, and these women's issues are especially lively in the most contested states, including Colorado, North Carolina, Arkansas and Louisiana.