The Republican candidate for governor is seeking to beef up his credentials with an important constituency that helped decide the last gubernatorial election: suburban women. Today, Bruce Rauner appeared at a town hall in the North Shore in front of an all-female crowd. And he appeared with his campaign’s secret weapon, his wife Diana.
She spoke of a ‘lump in her throat’ she had while pulling a republican ballot this primary, after describing herself as a lifelong democrat Rauner made the case that he is interested in problem solving, not partisanship. And on the divisive social issue of abortion, he wanted the crowd to know that he is no dyed in the wool conservative
“I believe that decision is best made by a women with her physician and family,” Rauner said, and the room applauded. “I want to emphasize, I don’t have a social agenda, Evelyn and I are pushing an economic and education agenda. The strategy of appealing to social moderates could help Rauner capture suburban women voters, who narrowly went for Pat Quinn over Bill Brady four years ago.
“I think its very positive, he’s running a platform of being all about the business community and putting our state back on track, but he’s not going to get bogged down by those types of (social) issues,” said attendee Pam Mjoseth.
“I liked his answer today on a woman’s right to choose,” said Vonita Reescer of suburban Glen Ellyn. “It’s nobody’s business, that’s not the state. So I really like him a lot.”
This appeal to moderates also reflects Rauner’s advertising strategy. One prominent commercial presents Rauner with his wife trading polite, friendly jabs at home on their couch, an ad campaign that’s playing on stations like Home and Garden TV and the Food Network.