Local 'Women for Mitt' Show Their Support for Romney-Ryan Ticket

"Women for Mitt" gathered Aug. 17 at the Hillsborough County Republican Party headquarters in Brandon to greet Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi and show their support for the Republican Party's presumptive presidential ticket.


Judy Wise, Mary Jo Futch and Diane Fleming arrived early, poised in a glass-walled room at the Hillsborough County Republican Party headquarters in Brandon, to greet with an enthusiastic crowd of like-minded voters the Aug. 17 arrival of Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi.

A graduate of King High School, and arriving with her husband, George, a graduate of Brandon High School, Bondi whisked into the room flanked by state Rep. Dana Young, R-Tampa, the Tampa Bay chair for the Women's Coalition for Mitt.

With them was Hillsborough County Commissioner Sandra Murman; state Senator Ronda Storms, who is running for the office of Hillsborough County property appraiser; and Margaret Iuculano, who opposes Democrat Kevin Beckner in his reelection bid for the District 6 seat on the Hillsborough County Board of County Commissioners.

It was Wise who caught Bondi's eye as she greeted the entusiasts gathered in support of Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney, the Republican Party's presumptive nominee for president, and his chosen running mate, Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin.

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Wise was carrying a sign that read: "Grandmothers for Mitt." With her was Romney supporter Diane Fleming.

"We're part of the 'Women for Mitt' and we support Romney and we suppport Pam Bondi," Wise said. "I'm really excited now because Ryan's part of the ticket and he is articulate and he expresses conservative ideas well."

Medicare promises to be a hot-item in this year's presidential race. Under an initial plan Ryan released in 2011 "Medicare would have changed from a program that pays doctors and hospitals fees for particular services to one in which beneficiaries would be paid an amount by the government that they could use toward private insurance premiums," according to a PolitiFact.com report by the Tampa Bay Times.

"This would have affected people who today are under 55 only, but critics said those who fell under the new rules would face an increasingly large gap between what the government paid for their benefits and what their health care services cost," according to the Times report.

Wise is not concerned with the critics.

"Yes, I like [Ryan's] ideas for Medicare," she said, noting that because she is age 55, it "won't affect me at all." But, she added, "my son is 42 and believe me, I don't want his Social Security or Medicare in danger, either."

As for the plan's finer points, Wise said she is willing to trust the messenger as critics pick apart the message.

"Who knows if what we're wrestling about now is the last idea or the best idea," she said. "But it's a plan in progress and the Democrats aren't talking about any solutions."

Jill Bader is the Florida communication director for the Republican National Committee. She was in Brandon to support the local efforts of the Women's Coalition for Mitt.

"Not only is this election crucial to Florida, but Florida is crucial to a Romney-Ryan victory," she said. "We've got a lot of work to do."

The Aug. 17 gathering, a photo and video opportunity by design, served as well as a rallying cry for grassroots support.

"It's kind of like a pep rally," Bader said, who added that with the upcoming Republican National Convention in Tampa, "this is an exciting time for us."

Ana Maria Stern said she was born in Spain and raised in Grenada, a country she and her family fled after the 1979 coup there.

"I don't believe in socialized anything, not business, not government, not Medicare," she said. Her support of the Romney-Ryan ticket, she said, is predicated on her belief that Freedom of Speech "was the first bastion of freedom and the best."

Speaking their minds is what Republican Party organizers are encouraging the "Women for Mitt" to do on Wednesdays. That's when supporters are invited to visit Republican "Victory Offices" — including the one in Brandon and in Temple Terrace, which planned to open Aug. 18 at 234 Bullard Pkwy. — to place campaign calls to other women.

"Every day it gets more exciting," said Terri Gaffney, general counsel for the Hillsborough County Republican Party. Women are invited to "place calls to women" to talk about the economy and issues that matter to them, Gaffney added.

As for her enthusiasm, Gaffney said she is even more supportive of Romney now that Ryan is on the ticket.

"He picked a genius," Gaffney said. "He [Ryan] has an economic plan. I'm a tax attorney, I liked his plan. I think it's doable, it does what it needs to do."


Whine and Moan August 19, 2012 at 03:53 PM
I heard that 20 people showed up - that's all.
Truth teller August 19, 2012 at 04:27 PM
Whine I think you have this event confused with Joe Biden's last event
Fred 'n Freeda August 19, 2012 at 05:25 PM
Thank you darling wonder Mitt! Thanks for blessing us with inspiration of inherited wealth. Thank you for teaching us nobody should pay more tax just because they hide money, tax-free, in the Caymans & Bermuda & Switzerland & Andorra. Thanks for having fools pay their taxes, while you live in luxury. Thanks for building an elevator for your cars & limos in one of your 7 palaces, which also gives us inspiration to be like you: accomplished & not being afraid to demonstrate loyalty to yr fellow accomplished friends with the promise to further lower their taxes. And also thank the Ryan budget author for promising to reduce yr tax rate to 1%. After all 13% tax rate sure beats the 37% rate those on salaries must pay. It'ss inspiring for all of us not yet rich as you; not rich like yr daddy, not rich as yr wife or boys. Thank you for choosing a running mate who is also a millionaire from the inheritance from his great-grandfather, the road builder, whose company was passed down to his son & then his son, Paul's Daddy afforded Mr. Ryan a life in Wash.DC & inspiration to lower taxes on his multimillionaire mom & dad & all those whom God has blessed. You go Mitt! Why should Americans wait for the government to give a measly retirement to those who paid for it, when you show how to take care of yourself? Why give people Obamacare just because people without $ get sick? If God wants them sick, why go against God's will? O Mitt, how inspiring you are! Pay no attention to envy!
Obama2012 August 20, 2012 at 02:26 PM
Romney-Ryan Ticket with be a and is already a bust as it should. Thank you ladies for showing support for two people the have no respect for the middle class or there seniors. Good Luck:)
jill carson August 21, 2012 at 05:05 PM
good job ladies, Mitt will help the country ... i hope Newt gets to speak there are women dying to go and listen to him speak . yes these women i work with never got involved with politics until Newt showed up and now thats all they talk about


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