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Women share their reasons for being at the Republican National Convention

John Brecher / NBC News

"I like the idea that Mitt Romney is a businessperson, and is concerned about what's important to small business owners," said Kathy Eshelman of Columbus, Ohio. As the founder of a small business, Eshelman's main concern is the reinvigoration of the economy.

John Brecher / NBC News

Jane C. Edmonds, a professor at Northeastern University in Boston, is a Democrat who came to the RNC to offer her support for Mitt Romney's candidacy.

NBC's Michael O'Brien reported Tuesday on the Republicans' need to capture the support of women from Democrats, noting:

"Obama led Romney 51 percent to 41 percent among women in the August NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll, and the GOP brand lags significantly behind the Democratic brand among women voters."

 At the same time, there are thousands of women attending the Republican National Convention, and not all of them are Republicans.

At left, Jane C. Edmonds, a professor at Northeastern University in Boston, is a Democrat who came to the RNC to offer her support for Mitt Romney's candidacy. She served as secretary of workforce development for Gov. Romney in Massachusetts from 2003 to 2007 and says that experience convinced her that he'd be a good president:

"I want to be able to feel that the next president of the United States will be in a position to move us from the place that we're at right now to a better future."

John Brecher / NBC News

Mary Elizabeth Russell, who studies international political economy at the University of Texas at Dallas, holds her just-autographed copy of Dinesh D'Souza's "Obama's America" in the Channelside district of Tampa. She said about her presence at the RNC: "We're the first generation who's worse off than our parents, and that's what makes me want to get involved."

Siobhan "Sam" Bennett is president and CEO of The Women's Campaign Fund of Washington D.C., which provides money through its political action committee to female candidates of any party, provided they support abortion rights. Bennett says that though her positions on issues haven't changed in 30 years, her place on the political spectrum has shifted from moderate Republican to liberal Democrat.

John Brecher / NBC News

"I stopped believing you have to be a Democrat to effect change," said Anita Moncrief of Washington D.C., editor-in-chief of emergingcorruption.com. A former employee of ACORN, she voted for Obama but then became disillusioned with his administration's political appointments. She registered as a Republican in March after "two and a half years and a lot of soul-searching."

John Brecher / NBC News

"We probably don't really understand how good we have it," said Colorado blogger Michelle Morin about living in America. Morin's perspective starts with the idea that the United States is unique among nations because of the principles established by its Founding Fathers, and that the freedoms that make it special are subject to continuous erosion. She said: "Most Americans I talk to outside of the conservative movement don't really have a full understanding and grasp of those principles that made this nation great."

Marion Jones is from Honolulu, but she got the hat as a gift from the Texas delegation. As a staunchly anti-abortion Catholic, her political choice boils down to the issue of abortion. Watch this video to hear her and other women at the RNC talk about what motivates them politically.

See more visual stories from the RNC in PhotoBlog, and NBC's full coverage of the event.

Slideshow: 2012 Republican National Convention

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