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President Obama at Valencia College in Orlando. / Pablo Martinez Monsivais, AP

President Obama told supporters in Florida on Thursday that he wants to "make sure our economy rewards the hard work of women," outlining an agenda likely to echo on the congressional campaign trail all year.

Obama joked that "I've got nothing against you men," but the entire country has a stake in seeing women succeed, and he stumped for new legislation on equal pay and family leave.

"This is a family agenda," Obama said during an event at Valencia College in Orlando. "But it starts with making sure that every woman is getting a fair shot."

Women voters are a key part of the coalition that Obama and Democrats hope to build as they face a challenging set of elections in November.

Later Thursday, Obama will headline a pair of Democratic Party fundraisers in Miami before heading back to Washington.

During his remarks in Orlando, Obama pointed out that most of the nation's workforce will soon be women, but they face "outdated work policies" that include unequal pay and inadequate family leave.

Touting his agenda, Obama called on Congress to support legislation on equal pay for equal work, paid leave for mothers and increasing the minimum wage. He said his oft-criticized health care law includes many benefits for women.

Obama conducted a roundtable discussion at Valencia, the latest in a series of discussions leading up to a "summit on working families" at the White House this summer.

Obama joked about his "personal stake" in seeing women succeed, citing his wife, daughters and mother-in-law.

"Women make up 80 percent of my household, if you count my mother-in-law," Obama said. "And I always count my mother-in-law."



Copyright 2014 USATODAY.com

Read the original story: Obama makes pitch to working women

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