1. Pete n SFO says

    If you live in the spotlight of politics, you must choose your words carefully, as Ms. Rosen now knows.

    A bit of humility goes a loooong way, and lest you forget, this fight is not about you.

  2. milpert says

    She has managed in her own incredibly stupid way to now make Mrs. Romney into a victim of the “radical left” and also into a sympathetic character. She needs to apologize and learn to speak carefully. I’m sure the Obama campaign is furious, as they well should be.

  3. Ricco says

    Hilary Rosen comes under fire for her comments on Ann Romney because families are supposed to be off limits . . . but if Romney is basing what he thinks he knows about women on what his wife tells him about women, citing his wife as an authority on working women then not only do I think she becomes fair game, but I think Hilary Rosen has a point. Far worse has been said by republicans about Michelle Obama AND her children . . . inaccurate and untrue things.

    That is not the case with Ann Romney.

    Just because Ann Romney made the decision to stay at home and raise the kids of her husband, are we seriously expected to believe that Thurston Howell III, aka, Mitt Romney’s wife, Mrs. Thurston Howell, has any more of a clue to the ins and outs of the ordinary house wife, than her clueless husband who has shown no demonstrable understanding of the day-to-day realities of the normal human being?

    Personally I am sick of a system where only millionaires can be elected to the highest positions of power in our country, that elections are bought. And I am sick of the millions upon million of dollars spent every two years while people sleep under bridges, go without food, and where insurance companies make medical decisions.

  4. Strepsi says

    She phrased it in such a way that she left herself open for attack, BUT I like that she is not backing down.

    The strategy of these other Democrats is the same one that LOST us Prop 8 in California: don’t offend anyone, make all taboo subjects ‘off limits’, etc. Well when the Republicans are determined to be offended by anything and everything, what then can you say?

    And when was the last time you heard a Republican apologize for aying something stupid?

    Obama’s “bipartisan” “turn the other cheek” methodology only want so far with a GOP that is partisan and will punch you in every cheek no matter how many times you turn it!


  5. Bob R says

    Mrs. Romney had the luxury of making that choice, the vast majority of American women don’t, they in fact must go to work so the family can make ends meet. Most women would love to be able to stay home and raise a family. Sadly, only the privileged can afford to do that in today’s America.

    I also wonder, did Mrs. Romney do it all herself, or did she decide to have hired help assist her? Faux outrage, a Rovian tactic. This is nonsense, similar to the Cheney’s outrage when Kerry mentioned their lesbian daughter.

    The fact remains, most American women work, in the real world, not the Ann Romney world of “Leave It To Willard.” Fight back, Hillary, you are right in what you said. Double down, that’s what the Republicans do.

  6. Erik says

    Ann Romney has been diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, a neurological disorder that causes muscle weakness and eventually will put her in a wheel chair. She was also diagnosed and treated for breast cancer. She is a stay at home mother for five boys. She has more on her plate than most working mothers in terms of her serious medical illnesses. Rosen’s comments were inappropriate.

  7. Caliban says

    “I made a choice to stay home and raise five boys. Believe me, it was hard work.”

    Yeah, yeah. I’m sure Ann Romney worked her poor little fingers to the bone, cleaning their various mansions from top to bottom without any help from a domestic staff. Uh-huh. Right.

    This is the sort of thing political campaigns latch onto but let’s face it, Hillary Rosen was right. WTF does Ann Romney know about HAVING to work outside the home in order to pay the mortgage, keep food on the table, etc. Her biggest decision many days is which horse to ask her groomsman to saddle up for her.

  8. Ricco says

    The only ones off limits in my books are the children. The adults are all fair game, particularly when their husbands hold them up as an authority.

    The White House is only angry because they worry that Hilary Rosen’s legitimate observations about Ann Romney will only open the door for republican’s to attack Michelle Obama . . . well the republicans have not only opened that door, they kicked it in.

  9. DrMikey says

    Give me a freaking break! Sure, there are many, many stay-at-home moms who work hard caring for their kids, cleaning house, doing laundry, shopping for and preparing meals, juggling household finances to make ends meet on their spouse’s salary, even helping the kids with their homework. But I do not believe for a milisecond that Ann Romney didn’t have a staff of less-than-minimum-wage employees who did all that for her so that she was able to meet her personal trainer daily, attend church commitee meetings, get her hair & nails done, have expensive lunches with equally wealty girlfriends, and do whatever she goddamn pleased until old Mittens got home from firing people at work.

  10. Demian says

    In any event, this doesn’t hand Romney the White House, for heaven’s sake.

    A whole lot of women will sympathize with Mrs. Romney’s health issues and ask pointedly why women’s health is of such little concern to Mitt.

  11. Javier says

    Rosen’s comments were inappropriate and unwise, politically and morally. She should quickly and profusely apologize, if not step down. It’s not about you, Hilary.

  12. Ricco says

    This is not the 1950’s . . . but even if it were let’s not pretend that a presidential candidate’s spouse is a mere child, and does not play an integral part in their husband’s campaign.

    God! It’s enough to make one cringe, the political BS, Hilary back peddling, going so far as to say that she admires Ann Romney!!

    What has Ann Romney ever done in her life that is worthy of admiration? Marry a millionaire?

    And what does she, apart from some basic plumbing, know about other women?

    Hell . . . I know more about other women than Ann Romney.

    It is time to move into the 21st century and stop treating women like children, especially when they are being cited as experts by their husbands.

  13. Pete n SFO says

    Anybody remember, Mrs Clinton’s comments in Bill’s 1st run for the WH, about “staying home, baking cookies”?

    You can be right & still be wrong in the media. Rosen, is a strategist. She should know that better than anyone.

  14. Alex says

    I agree with her – she said nothing wrong. Mrs. Romney being a working mother was probably EASIER due to their hundreds of millions of dollars. What about the women who work 5 jobs to pay for one of their children’s medical issues? Just like her MS is easier to deal with because she has the money to pay for the best treatments as well as not have to worry about copays, etc.

  15. Jack M says

    One can infer from these remarks that Ms. Rosen does not consider child rearing as work, which is really not what people want to hear, nor is it accurate. I’m in no way a Romney supporter, but this is not appropriate.

  16. Ricco says

    ERIK says that Ann Romney “has more on her plate than most working mothers in terms of her serious medical illnesses.”

    Not True! The things that most concern a mother are her children. Ann Romney could develop ten more serious maladies (I hope not) and would still not have as much on her plate as the average “healthy” working mother who cannot afford health care for their children, cannot afford day care, to provide a decent home in a safe neighborhood, feed their kids, or provide the thousand and one things children need or want.

    Imagine if Ann Romney was a working or stay-at-home mom who did not have a rich husband, and spent her final months and years arguing with insurance companies to cover her medical expenses.

    Her medical problems prove only one thing, ERIK . . . and that is that even the rich are not immune to sickness and death . . . But get some perspective, man . . . Ann Romney’s worse day can never compare to the best day of the average American mother.

  17. Disgusted American says

    when Ann Romney has to raise 8 kids on a firemens salary from the 60’s and 70’s, and has to make left-overs stretch for 10 people, or has to borrow a neighbors car to take a kid to the drs..while getting someone to babysit the others..then we’ll talk! Til then – she & the right wing can shut thier collective Pie-Holes.

  18. JonInVa says

    Maybe Ms. Rosen should find a “husband” who could have supported her and their family and allowed her to stay home. Instead she denigrates another woman for the “luxury” of having exactly that. Nothing more ridiculous than a lesbian mocking traditional mothers of any economic status.

  19. V-8 says

    it must be nice to have a choice like that… a choice, like many others, that most do not have…

    let’s not crucify this person, we have bigger enemies here… I hope women come out in support of Rosen…

    shame on u, Andy Coop……

  20. Ricco says

    Having kids is work . . . but only for the time frame it takes to bear them and give birth to them.

    Ann Romney could have had 15 kids, and would not know the deprivation of a single mother, working at Wal-Mart with only one kid.

    My mother had nine kids. My grandmother had sixteen kids and was crippled with rheumatoid arthritis for the last two kids. I’m not ready to give Ann Romney mother of the year for managing to do what even the worse mothers do.

    There is a lot more to being a mother than getting pregnant and having a child.

  21. Dennis says

    Mitt Romney said he relies on his wife for information on what women today want and need from the economy. Ms. Rosen said Mrs. Romney never worked a day in her life-which is true, she’s never held a job, never had to stick to a budget and never had to choose; “do I feed my children this month or clothe them?” Rosen is under attack by Romney’s camp because Mrs. R raised five boys and while that is indeed work, not so much really when you have unlimited wealth to do it with. Rosen is under attach by Obama’s deputy campaign manager because family should be off limits during campaigns-well, Romney brought her into it himself as a source and Rosen was simply questioning the validity of that source. I am ashamed for Messina & Cutter’s criticism, they obviously did no research into the incident and simply reacted immediately. As for Ann Romney-anyone in that position of privilege should be slapped for complaining that ANYTHING they’ve done was hard work.

  22. Ricco says

    I can think of something more ridiculous than a lesbian mocking traditional mothers of any economic status, JONINVA . . . and that would be a lesbian, a gay man, or whatever you are, touting the “traditional” mother (whatever that is supposed to mean) superior to a lesbian who is also a mother.

    Maybe you you have not quite figured out where you are. This is Towleroad, a “Site with homosexual tendencies” the tendency being here to refute the “traditional mother, father” or anyone, anything that would marginalize what we think and say.

    Hilary Rosen is a woman, and she is a mother, who just happens to be a lesbian, and whether politically wise or not, is qualified to address Ann’s suitability to speak on the behalf of women.

    Besides you don’t have to be a mother . . . hell . . . you do not even have to be a woman to mock what is so obviously ridiculous . . . because many of have mothers who sacrificed every day of their life, their own comfort and happiness to make us happy. We were their utter joy, their utter fulfillment, their utter reason for getting up and trying one more time to get through another day . . .and we have sisters who got married and had kids, and have watched them go through the same struggles as our mothers . . . so yes we can mock SOME traditional mothers . . . especially when those mothers are living lives that are anything but traditional.

  23. says

    So typical: faux media outrage and faux demands for an apology that makes zero difference in the actual world. So much easier to get embroiled in these meaningless (except to the media who cashes in from them) conflicts than to talk about the reality of Republican policies for women. And no, however she put it, it’s not outrageous to suggest that the Romney family–including Mrs. Romney–might be out of touch with the concerns of the average American woman. How out of touch politicians–particularly but not exclusively Republicans–are with the lives of women (even though most of them have wives who are, surprise, women!) has been demonstrated over and over this year, but we end up talking more about the talk than the substance cause talk is more entertaining. She’ll be under fire for a few days then it will get stuffed in the media recycling bin as we await the next outrage.

  24. Dominic says

    Hey, my mother raised 10 kids and had to work, along with my father. She didn’t have a husband worth $200M that allowed her to stay home with the kids and ride champion show horses. Hey Ann Romney, I wish my saintesd mother was still alive so you could kiss her ass, but you can always suck my balls, honey!

  25. Michaelandfred says

    Off limits? Hardly. She stands next to him at media events, gives interviews about him and policy, he tauts her as an advisor… Can’t stand the heat, then seriously, stay the hell out if the kitchen, but don’t cook the food and then say complain to the bus boy.

    As for the content, spot on. Nobody was knocking her being a stay at home mom, but she knows as much about the dufficulties the average American mom has as Mitt does the average American man.

  26. Tagg says

    Hmmmm…Joniniva, are your for real? Must be a Romney plant! Housewives do not work “harder” than working women who do both…especially not a women, who without a doubt, has servants left and right. Hillary was point on and has nothing to apoligize for.

  27. Marlene says

    She (Mrs. Romney) made the right choice. By the way, the hardest job in the world is raising a family. There are many women out there who can afford to be a stay at home mom but choose to work because working is easier than raising a family. I raised 6 children and worked full time. It is a choice every mother has to make and sometimes it is not the one she wants.

  28. Jim Silberman says

    I wonder whether Hilary Rosen has children of her own? I don’t know, but her comment about Ann Romney was so insensitive, so ignorant and so wrong that I suspect she does not.

  29. Ricco says

    MARLENE . . . it is not Ann Romney’s choice to be a stay-at-home mom that we question. We question that whatever choice Ann Romney made, she was never likely to feel the repercussions or worry that comes from wondering if one has made the right choice, and we question that she has the smallest inkling or empathy of the average mother, who unlike Ann Romney, does not have the luxury to choose one way or another. therefore question her suitability to speak on behalf of those women.

    All Ann Romney has in common with those other women is the basic plumbing, which may not even be enough to engage her on The Vagina Monologues . . . unless it be The Vagina Monologues For The Rich And Famous.

  30. Tagg says

    Im LMAO over these folks defending Queen Romney! Hilary’s comment was so obvious about Ann never working a REAL job outside of her being a housewife (a very pampered one at that!) It’s kinda like all these homophobes who talk about what’s it like to be gay…if you arn’t “it” you can’t talk “it”. Kinda like Ann…

  31. Ricco says

    Yes, JIM SILBERMAN . . . Hilary Rosen has kids . . . twins as a matter of fact.

    But I don’t see what was insensitive about her remarks.

    What is insensitive is the suggestion that Ann Romney is your typical stay-at-home mom, and has a clue of what the average woman, who has not married a millionaire, goes through who cannot afford health care for herself or her children, who does not have the money to pay for day care, struggles to keep food on the table, a roof over their heads, and has to decide which bills to pay each month.

    What is insensitive is the suggestion that she even cares about the struggles of other women when the issues her husband seems primarily concerned with is gay marriage.

    Forgive us if we are not prepared to make Mrs. Thurston Howell III mother of the year, or Woman of the Year.

    She’s living on an island, and completely out of touch, so what is insensitive is the idea that a woman living on an island is representative of the struggles women bear.

  32. gwynethcornrow says

    Ms. Rosen is absolutely correct. All of her comments have been on the money. Even her last response to Ann Romney was courteous but firm. Stand your ground, Ms. Rosen. You have taken an ethically-unassailable position.

  33. TJ says

    I’d add to the fray, but I’m going to be lazy and suggest that anyone defending Mrs. Romney and deriding Ms. Rosen read RICCO’s comments.

    What evidence have we that Mrs. Romney can empathize with the struggles, choices, and decisions facing the average woman? Given the evidence her husband provides on almost a daily basis that he has no clue what it is like for most people, I have little reason to expect anything but the same from his wife. Advising from within the gilded bubble seems suspect advice.

  34. sara says

    Some arguments just aren’t winnable whether you’re right or not. Hilary has only succeeded in giving Ann Romney a cause, speaking up for the women who stay at home & raise their kids–without earning an outside paycheck. Those women already have a contentious relationship with other women who look down on them. Hilary needs to walk away from this argument because it will only make Ms Romney look good.

  35. gayalltheway says

    Yea, if that’s the truth, why is that wrong to make those comment?

    Rosen didn’t slant her in anyway. The fact is Ann Romney is rich and drives “a couple Bentleys”. The average income earning, hardworking, middle-class people should be aware of that.

    They said that she made the choice to stay home and raised 5 kids – implying that she actually had the luxury to make that choice. Guess what? some mothers out there with 5 kids do not have that choice.

    Her husband, Mitt “the big fat liar” Romney claimed that his wife has the experience to advise him on the common women’s issues and how she can relate to most working mothers. She SHOULD be called out on that.

    By the way, no one is denying that stay at home moms work very hard to raise kids and manage the household. All these men who said that “oh, Rosen should have never said that because stay at home moms work just as hard” are just trying to cover their own asses probably because they, at one point or another in their marriages, tried to convince their wives to “quit their jobs and stay at home to to raise the kids”.

    Let’s hear from the women and mothers about this issue. The men can STFU and step aside.

    Ms. Rosen, do not ever give in and apologize. We stand by you.

  36. Jed says

    When Republicans assail Democrats for being misinformed, we fold. Here, Rosen stated the obvious disconnect between Ann Romney and women who are in the work force. When mothers run households AND hold down low wage jobs, AND are single parents, THOSE are tough choices. Ann Romney has the luxury of raising an obscenely large, dull family without a care in the world (save the car elevator in their new beach house). Priorities people. Lets not lose sight – they are the 1% and cannot be made to look like empathetic people when they secretively fund hate campaigns. WAKE UP! Fight back or get mowed down by the unscrupulous, well-funded christianists, GOP hacks and hate mongers.

  37. sara says

    Again, as a democratic strategist this is a Fail on her part. All women will hear is that comment, about not working a day in her life & the implication that this applies to women who stay home & raise their kids. This is a little like when Republicans tried to frame the argument that it was not about contraception but about mandates. Women heard it as about contraception.

    Women aren’t stupid. They’re aware of Ann’s wealth & that she couldn’t possibly have the same life choices they had so Rosen didn’t need to have pointed out the obvious & by implication, insult a group of women who are already defensive about their decision to raise their families their way. You already have the women voting bloc–why go out of your way to antagonize them.

    Hilary might be sticking to her guns right now but I see an apology in her future.

  38. Mike says

    Ridiculous. Rosen wasn’t making a sexist argument; she was making an argument about class…. about not having to make the choices and meet the challenges that an averages woman faces.

  39. says

    I’m not sure what Rosen should be apologizing for. Ann Romney is a preposterously-rich multi-millionaire wife who…yeah, stayed at home to raise a bunch of Mormons.

    she has no bloody idea “what matters to Americans”

    this is not insulting her, it’s pointing out reality

  40. Ricco says

    Really SARA . . . all women will hear is Hilary Rosen comment about Ann Romney: “not working a day in her life,” and assume she was referring to stay-at-home moms?

    I suppose you are correct, if other women, like you, had not troubled themselves to read the entire article, listen to the entire interview, would draw that conclusion . . . but I am willing to bet that the majority of stay-at-home moms, who have that amazing ability to understand barely articulate children, will not be pressed to understand Hilary Rosen’s comments as having to do with Ann Romney, that because of her vast wealth, has not worked a day in her life.

    Has she wiped up a spill? Certainly. Changed a diaper? Not hard to imagine. Did all the things stay-at-home moms do without any help? Absolutely NOT!

    The woman has not worked, really worked, day-after-day, month-after-month, year-after-year, without respite, or hope of a rest, a SINGLE day in her life day.

    For those of us who have seen our mothers, our sisters, our grandmothers live and die as just described we are insulted that this pampered woman is being held up as a typical stay-at-home mom.

    For those stay-at-home moms who did not get that message then it will be because they are either stupid (some women, like men, are stupid), or because they choose to misconstrue Hilary Rosen’s words, to purposely choose to separate the context from the full meaning and be offended.

    Well many of us choose not overly concern ourselves with stupid people, or purposeful ignorance.

    If you read back all the comments left, here, on Towleroad you will see that most of us understood exactly what Hilary Rosen said. We were not confused, thus offended on the behalf of our mothers and our sisters.

    We did not think she was attacking stay-at-home moms, rather the idea that Ann Romney’s experience as a stay-at-home is at all representative of the average stay-at-home mom who does not have the benefit of maids and nanny’s, and money to take a break from her children whenever the mood hits her. So, like Hilary Rosen, the majority of us on Towleroad, and Huffington Post too (go check out their comments) do not believe Ann Romney has worked a day in her life.

  41. sara says

    @ Ricco Nice bit of lecture that I did not need in the least. I’m perfectly capable of reading & understanding what Hilary Rosen was trying to say & of course can agree with it. So what. That’s not the political reality of it all. You don’t need to state the obvious & create waves where none are needed.

    Women can easily differentiate between Ms Romney’s life of privilege & their own. They’re also aware all these candidates are multi millionaires. Isn’t Hilary Rosen a multi millionaire herself? I’ve been a working mother & I’ve been a stay at home mother & people do not stay home for all the same reasons & it’s not always about the economics.

    And look, exactly as I predicted, Hilary Rosen has apologized to Ann Romney. Why, because this is a LOSING issue. You don’t do anything to seem like you’re pitting working women against stay at home women, especially when you want the votes of both groups. Also please, never respond to anything on Twitter–You just know it’ll end up with an apology of some kind.

  42. sara says

    Also for those wondering why she should have apologized–because this needed to disappear from the news cycle fast. The latest polls showed Obama with a 19 percentage point lead among women. You don’t give a gift of a divisive gender issue to your opponents when you enjoy that kind of lead.

  43. says

    Smartly put, Sara. And you were on the money with the apology prediction.

    Ultimately, Hilary’s comment–though I agree with its intention–didn’t add to the argument against Romney as a fit leader on women’s issues, it distracted from it. When you become the distraction–rightly or wrongly–when your side already has the advantage, you need to recalibrate your argument, and undoubtedly Hilary has and will from now on.

  44. cbhermey says

    I think most Americans, and certainly most American women, knew exactly what Hillary Rosen meant. There’s certainly a disconnect between her and 90+ percent of married American women when it comes to what has to be done to raise a family. I’m sure many women would love to be accomplished equestrians like Ann is, but work (or searching for it) kind of gets in the way. It would be lovely to have several residences that one can flit off to on a whim, but that’s simply unaffordable to most, and again there’s that pesky job… It never really said whether Ann was a soccer mom, or whether her activities with the boys stopped at the morning scripture classes…

  45. Ricco says

    I apologize, SARA, for the lecture. It is an unfortunate habit of mine when I am met with or witness self-righteousness. And nothing from your original posts indicated to me that you actually read or listened to the entire story.

    You are right about one thing, however, that Rosen was going to have to apologize. It was something I lamented in an earlier posting.

    And that is the problem with democrats, offering apologies to people who choose to be offended, something republicans never do . . . even when they should.

    It’s only a losing battle when you give up and turn on your own. Hilary did not become a distraction. The republicans came out and attempted to make Hilary out to be the distraction when all she was was an unpaid CNN commentator, in no way connected to Obama’s campaign, or any campaign, and the gutless democrats, instead of doubling down and bringing the real issue of Mitt Romeny’s inability to connect with the every-day man and woman in America, chose instead to jump on Hilary Rosen with Obama’s insane need to appear bi-partisan.

    No worries about me and Twitter. I prefer intelligent conversation over snarky soundbites.

  46. millerbeach says

    Ask yourselves one question…how many nannies did you have growing up? Me? None. Mom went to university while I was growing up, then worked full-time and had my brother. Yes, dad was around, but mom did most of the child-rearing work. I agree totally with what Hilary said, and am having trouble with the fact that what she said is being taken soooo out of context. Does anyone really believe that Ann Romney’s days were spent scrubbing toilets and washing clothes? Heck no! Not when hubby is a multi-millionaire! Actually, I would have less respect for Mitt (if that is possible) if I suddenly found out that she WAS scrubbing toilets while her hubby was counting all that coin.

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