April 12th, 2012
01:54 PM ET
10 years ago

Rosen apologizes over comments against Ann Romney

(CNN) - Hilary Rosen offered an apology Thursday after her comments about Ann Romney sparked an uproar and a debate over women and the economy.

"I apologize to Ann Romney and anyone else who was offended," Rosen, a top Democratic strategist and CNN contributor, said in a statement. "Let's declare peace in this phony war and go back to focus on the substance."

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The previous day, Rosen argued Ann Romney could not understand the struggles of women in the sluggish workforce because she "never worked a day in her life" as a stay-at-home mother.

Her comments quickly set off a spiraling controversy, as high-profile leaders on both sides of the aisle rushed to the defense of Ann Romney and that of women opting not to pursue their careers to solely focus on raising their children.

Read the full statement below:

"Let's put the faux 'war against stay at home moms' to rest once and for all. As a mom I know that raising children is the hardest job there is. As a pundit, I know my words on CNN last night were poorly chosen. In response to Mitt Romney on the campaign trail referring to his wife as a better person to answer questions about women than he is, I was discussing his lack of a record on the plight of women's financial struggles. Here is my more fulsome view of the issues. As a partner in a firm full of women who work outside of the home as well as stay at home mothers, all with plenty of children, gender equality is not a talking point for me. It is an issue I live every day. I apologize to Ann Romney and anyone else who was offended. Let's declare peace in this phony war and go back to focus on the substance."

Filed under: 2012 • Ann Romney • Economy
soundoff (595 Responses)
  1. vic , nashville ,tn

    I watched last night even Paul Baggala was not happy on that moment so don’t try to tie to white house

    April 12, 2012 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
  2. Doug Hutch

    I do not know why it is so surprising that a comment could be taken out of text by Ann Romney. I'm not an educated man and maybe that is why I could tell it was obvious that it wasn't the type of work that Mrs Romney was doing but that she has never had a "Job" for financial means. It is obvious how out of touch they are when she got all bent out of shape saying "don't say I don't work" Really sad to jump to conclusions. You have not had to work to provide for your family! Wow

    Time and time again we hear what the rich think about the middle class. Hillary Rosen you are on the money with your comment and it truly is sad that some people have no common sense! Keep up the great work.

    April 12, 2012 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
  3. Another Day in the Idiot Mines (not the whiny rightwing liar)

    Gotta love the phony poutrage from the rightwing extremists and Rmoney groupies. Rosen used a poor choice of words to make a valid point. On the other hand, none of you nutjobs ever seem to criticize CNN's rightwing pundits like Loesch and Ericsson, who spew vile things with no valid points at least once a month. Admit it, righties, ya'll are a bunch of thin skinned hypocrites.

    April 12, 2012 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
  4. frank88

    Just another poor choice from the Democratic leadership

    April 12, 2012 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
  5. beevee

    There are a lot of middle class and not so rich women in the country who have children to take care of and had to work to support the family unlike tha case of Ann Romney who has done a great job of bringing up her five kids but did not need to have a paying job at the same time. Many of us do not have that luxury. Mitt Romeny and the reps are obviously trying to stir up this non-issue.

    April 12, 2012 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
  6. Dr. Knowitall

    A mother raising a decent child puts more capital back into our system than any regular 9-5 job can ever do. Raising one is tough enough let alone 5. Our country would be a better place if more mothers that are able and want to raised their kids.

    April 12, 2012 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
  7. dean

    How did the Obama bus tires feel Hilary?

    April 12, 2012 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
  8. Dad

    Attack on soccer moms who drive vans are next. Shame on Hilary!

    April 12, 2012 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
  9. hopeismyname

    Are you kidding me!!!!!!!!!??????? You are suggesting that Ann Romney has ever done anything that a single mom has had to deal with ??? I bet she makes a phone call to get a servant to come to her child's room to pick up the laundry....Ann Romney seems like a wonderful woman but COME ON... she really has never suffered the day to day stuff that the rest of us have..... Ann Romney is a lovely spokeswoman but she's had every advantage that 90% of the woman in the world have not ...I can not in any way shape or form bond with Ann Romney nor her husband...they simply don't understand what my life looks like and they can NEVER understand it because they've never lived it. shame on Ann Romney for throwing out her "stay at mom" status....she probably had chefs, tutors, drivers gardeners, babysitters, tennis instructors, sailing instructors,.....blah blah blah........Hard to like them because they are SO FAR REMOVED from my world. They feel like aliens to me....

    April 12, 2012 04:47 pm at 4:47 pm |
  10. KindaSorta

    I understood what Rosen was trying to say. Mitt Romney is getting his advice from his wife on what women are concerned most with in this campaign. He needs to get a broader look at what the AVERAGE woman is faced with in this economy, you know the ones who have to have a job and come home home and raise their children while not receiving the needed child support it takes to cover all the bills!

    April 12, 2012 04:47 pm at 4:47 pm |
  11. Bruce G

    One might expect such a condescending remark from a male chauvinist but for a woman in the 21st Century to suggest that a stay-at-home mom has never worked a day in her life is an afront to all women who work at home as CFO, COO, CIO and more C's than most corporations. I know many men and women who readily admit that working outside the home is a lot easier than being a stay-at-home mom or dad.

    April 12, 2012 04:48 pm at 4:48 pm |
  12. John J

    I just viewed Wolf Blizer "grill" Hilary Rosen. It is a known fact that Mrs. Romney has not had to face the same issues that other women who have not enjoyed her financial status has had to face. I am disgusted in the way that Blitzer came across and displayed sick lines of questioning towards Ms. Rosen. Hilary Rosen while she is "nailed to the cross". I have no respect for Blitzer......he sucks. Take the politics out of this and lets focus on the issues, period!

    April 12, 2012 04:48 pm at 4:48 pm |
  13. Dave

    What Rosen said was politically stupid, but let's be honest here, she's right. I'm sure Ann Romney is a nice person, but to say that she speaks for the typical mother is silly. Most mothers out there don't have husbands making millions of dollars a year. Ann Romney is no more aware of what typical mothers or women in general deal with than her out-of-touch husband is.

    April 12, 2012 04:48 pm at 4:48 pm |
  14. MJP

    I think the Romney’s have what everyone else wants and they are being condemned for. There is nothing wrong with being rich from working hard. I manage my family finances and manage around the concerns. My husband is hard worker makes money (not as much as Mitt) but has no worries, does not know anything about prices and costs because I took them on. He lives a worry free life and does not have a lot of money. I don't believe money and worries are inter-related

    April 12, 2012 04:48 pm at 4:48 pm |
  15. riley

    Wolf your interview with Hilary was awful. you charged at her like a blind bull. you miss the comment that she was making and it was that romney uses his wife has a source of many subjects besides what women think. the only thing that Hilary could have clarified was the word work. most people refer to the word 'work' as a w2 job. all people work but not for wages. the point you missed is that romney comes across as a mama's boy and when grown he attached himself to his wife (good thing she is a strong person). when things goes his way like the comment he made after rick suspended his run romney sounded like a snake oil salesman. when confronted with with questions from the press and in the debates he comes out like a stumbling person who does not know how to think on his feet. more than likely if he did as well as he says in business; romney has the ability to select good managers that know how to get things done. so back to my disappoint in you - you did not approach the item with out taking sides for you definitely sounded that you are all agog about mrs romney. again mr romney was who Hilary was attacking and mothers who work rather it is inside the house or outside the house. boy you REALLY disappointed as not seeing the real problem the mr romney does not have any idea what one middle class person has to face with the way the times are and the wolf pack is at the door. i did not forget that the poor will be taken care of by someone. i am sorry the rick suspended but his family must come first now.

    April 12, 2012 04:49 pm at 4:49 pm |
  16. Carol Hunt

    Really.......a Democratic strategist ......and she didn't realize how her comments would be received! It's amazing to watch the way these folks operate.................and they actually think they aren't transparent! Believe it or not, Ms. Rosen, there are women who can work inside &/or outside the home / raise children / and contribute to their communities....and then there are...........Democratic strategists! I work! I'm Republican............and I thank only myGod for my opportunities!

    April 12, 2012 04:49 pm at 4:49 pm |
  17. Vic

    Just because Mrs. Romney hears women talking about how important the economic issue are to them does not mean she really understands it from their point of view. That Mrs. Romney took this as a personal attack shows just how out of touch she really is with the middle and lower classes. I would love to see the Romneys live on an average income for even a month. Then they might understand the issues facing the typical family. Most mothers do not have the option of staying at home, instead having the full time job of being a mother while trying to fit in a full time employment without maids, cooks or nannies. I would have loved to be a stay at home mom instead instead of going to work on zero sleep because I was up all night with a sick child on a work night while making meals, participating in my child's activities, helping with homework, doing dishes, laundry and cleaning house. Hilary Rosen has nothing to apologize for because it was not an attack on anyone, she was merely pointing out issues facing MOST women.

    April 12, 2012 04:49 pm at 4:49 pm |
  18. Working Woman from NY

    Rosen 'apologized' only because she had to from the backlash. (I'm sure she got some calls from the White House...)

    Not considering childrearing as 'work' and insinuating that those who choose to stay home are not in tune with the economic issues that the rest of the country has to face is wrong. Good for you Ann!

    April 12, 2012 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  19. Todd

    I can't believe all the comments on this board defending Rosen's comments because they assume that Ann Romney had a staff to take care of her kids while she sat around eating bon bons. Do your homework, when the Romneys married Mitt was still in college. When the kids were young he was working as a business consultant as a paid employee (OMG one of the 99%!!!!) He did not take any money from his father because he wanted to make it on his own. He did not create Bain until 1984, 15 years after he and Ann married. Yes, Ann Romney has experienced what it's like to struggle to stay within a budget with 5 young children. I work two jobs to provide for my family so my wife can manage our home and care for our children. I guarantee you my wife knows a hell of a lot more about the economy and finances than most of the women working outside the home. If you are a woman and you are not offended by this then you are blinded by political views

    April 12, 2012 04:52 pm at 4:52 pm |
  20. ray

    Rush Limbaugh & Hilary Rosen
    Politics at its worst!

    April 12, 2012 04:53 pm at 4:53 pm |
  21. charmed4sr

    This is not about who works harder, its about understanding. Being a SAHM is always a choice. Being a paycheck mom usually is a necessity either for money or insurance.

    April 12, 2012 04:53 pm at 4:53 pm |
  22. Steve

    Not all women are single moms at work. Hilary Rosen attacked stay at home moms. And the ones that do not understand that are the liberals who hate stay at home moms.

    April 12, 2012 04:55 pm at 4:55 pm |
  23. Tom in San Diego

    CNN should be ashamed of this Headline. I watched the video attached to the article 3 times and I DID NOT HEAR or SEE anyone apologise for anything to Mrs. Romney.

    You guys are propagandists and should be ashamed of yourselves....


    April 12, 2012 05:00 pm at 5:00 pm |
  24. bobby frank dallas texas

    The truth hurts! The Romney's don't have a clue about what the middle-class have to go thru nor do they even care. They just want to get to the White House so they can destroy the middle-class even more. My grandfather always told me that the Republicans will try to starve the middle-class to death in every way possible.

    April 12, 2012 05:00 pm at 5:00 pm |
  25. Just Say No to Flipper

    The GOBP cult's hypocrisy and poutrage on this is stunning. Can a single one of you rightwing nutjobs give an example of the GOBP jumping to Michelle Obama's defense after yet another media smear from the RIght WIng Noise Machine? Of course you can't because it didn't happen. Nor have the Rmoneys ever spoken up in Ms. Obama's defense.

    And lets compare Rosen with Rush, who is far more prominent among his party than she is among hers. Rush refused to apologize after slandering Ms. Fluke for three days. Rmoney offered a lame and half-hearted criticism of two words Rush used, and refused to address the slander itself. Yet now Rmoney is trying to gin up this phony poutrage over some poorly chosen words that were nevertheless true in meaning: The Rmoneys are way out of touch with average Americans.

    April 12, 2012 05:03 pm at 5:03 pm |
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