The so-called War on Women is fast becoming a political third rail, as much as the race issue, at least in some ways.
As we’ve seen in the last couple of days.
A Democratic operative, Hilary Rosen, was on CNN Wednesday, and had this to say about Ann Romney:
“Ann Romney never worked a day in her life.”
Oops! Are you kidding? A mom never worked a day in her life? How stupid can Rosen get?
Pretty stupid, apparently.
Because that part of her comment has touched off a political firestorm, with Republicans using it to suggest that Dems are denigrating stay-at-home moms.
And really, in isolation, Rosen’s statement is offensive. As any mom can tell you, and any dad who’s watched a mom in action can tell you, being a mom is 24/7, 365.
Even if she works. Especially when she works.
Rosen, on Thursday, walked the gang plank and apologized. Both Obamas and Biden distanced themselves from anything associated with Rosen, including Rosen herself. And of course, Republicans have made political hay out of it.
Hope Rosen’s save up her money. For someone who’s supposed to be a spinmeister, she exhibited some gross stupidity.
But what about the rest of Rosen’s statement?
Here’s what followed the “never worked” part:
“ She’s never really dealt with the kinds of economic issues that a majority of the women in this country are facing, in terms of how do we feed our kids, how do we send them to school, and why do we worry about their future.”
Which is true. Due to the hard work and good fortune of her husband, Mrs. Romney’s never had the concerns the majority working moms have had to face.
And that’s where Mrs. Romney’s clueless.
She’s been Gov. Romney’s go-to on women’s issues, in essence now a part of his campaign apparatus:
And this was part of her response to Rosen:
“I made a choice to stay home and raise five boys. Believe me, it was hard work.”
Yes, hard work. No one — not even Rosen, I’d guess — would argue.
But the key to Mrs. Romney’s cluelessness is in the first sentence: “choice.”
Because of Mrs. Romney’s financial status, she and her husband had the luxury of that choice.
Unlike the vast majority of women in our country today, who, as Ms. Rosen pointed out, have to concern themselves with having enough money to provide a relatively comfortable life for their families, to decide which bills to pay, how to afford clothes or even food for their kids, wondering if they or their spouses will have their jobs next week.
Ms. Romney had none of those worries.
Because of that, her “choice” was not one that involved the very difficult economic choice to get out of the work force. She knew that staying home and raising five kids, as admirable as that certainly is, would not create a financial burden for her family.
And if Mr. Romney insists on using Mrs. Romney as his “woman question” expert, then what Mrs. Romney says is fair game for critics.
Her life is admirable in many ways – a great mother, apparently, a person who’s fought both cancer and MS.
But an expert on the struggles American women face? Well, not so much.