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. naypeau

    Why apologize?
    Why apologize to Ann Romney?
    Why apologize to a woman who has never worked?
    Why apologize to a stay at home mom?
    Why apologize to a wealthy woman who had hired help?
    Why apologize to a mom who could afford baby sitters whenever?
    Ann Romney has NO business commenting on anything other than ..........
    diapers, breast feeding, PTA's, Campbell's soup, chicken pox, measles, high school proms, choice of which college to go to & penis envy.

    April 12, 2012 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  2. ap

    why would anyone apologize to this fool? she clearly hasnt worked a day in her life. good for her for standing up for the majority of americans and majority of women.. the world needs more truth tellers...

    April 12, 2012 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  3. Fair is Fair

    What's the take of the National Organization for Women?

    April 12, 2012 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  4. Deephaven

    Great. So now let's add in all stay at home moms to the number of people in the work force. That means employment numbers just increased dramatically.

    April 12, 2012 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  5. jnpa

    I completely agree with Hilary Rosen. The republicans have taken what she said and turned it into an assault on stay at home women raising their families. That is NOT what Rosen said or what she meant. Ann Romney is not in a position to advise her husband on the economic strifes facing women in the workplace because she has never worked outside the home. She may have raised 5 kids, but that does not make her an authority on anything other than raising 5 kids, especially when her husband was making millions and the Governor of Massachusetts. However, I do agree that families of nominees should be off limits. That includes Michelle Obama!

    April 12, 2012 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  6. Holly

    This is so silly! Of course Ann Romney has worked...she raised her boys. How many really think that this isn't work? Well, you are crazy! I work with one of her sons and yes, she has done laundry and yes, she has cooked, cleaned and done yard work. When her MS has flaired up, she couldn't. If you don't know why, then research the subject "MS" and you will know why. People, don't get her confused with someone that is a rich snobby person that won't lift a finger cause she does work and has worked very hard in the past as well.

    April 12, 2012 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |

    Rosen is DISGUSTING!
    I would say that Mrs.Romney worked very hard bring up 5 kids.
    How about you Rosen?!

    April 12, 2012 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  8. rob

    First CNN and Rosen tried to "clarify" her statement while still shilling for Obama that Mrs. Romney is out of touch with women. Now however she obvioulsly got the ORDER from the top to stand down on this one because the instant polling showed the vast majority of Americans supporting Mrs. Romney. That is the only reason she backed down.....PRICELESS.

    You Dems won't have it so easy this time, we Americans are not as stupid as you think.

    April 12, 2012 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  9. David

    How is it that Ann and Mitt are constantly portrayed as being rich and out of touch. Sure Ann hasn't often worried about how to pay the next bill. But do you really think the Michelle Obama did? I guess Obama's millions put him much more in touch with the common man? Maybe take a look at charitable giving? I think the Romney's millions towards charities show they know other people need a hand in life and are in fact in touch with the common man.

    The couple's first son was born in 1970 while both were undergraduates at Brigham Young, living in a $75-a-month basement apartment according to wikipedia article so uuum..Yeah they worried about bills.

    April 12, 2012 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  10. Donna

    Only an idiot would say that a mother who stays at home never worked. That is the hardest job I ever had. Going back to work was a romp in the park compared to raising my boys

    April 12, 2012 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  11. tam

    Thanks God Ms. Rosen is not a black woman. Can you believe what the right would've have said if Ms. Rosen was black? They would've been claiming racism all the way.

    April 12, 2012 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  12. MBane

    Why is she appologizing? Since when do people have to appologise for saying the truth? The woman never worked a day in her life.

    April 12, 2012 02:53 pm at 2:53 pm |
  13. Steve

    Why do people believe politicians? Please understand the more a government says they are going to help people, they end up only helping those that bought and paid for the politican. We have a group of politicians that is bought and paid for and we have a bunch of idiots believing what these hacks say Go ahead and argue because that is what they want you to do.

    April 12, 2012 02:53 pm at 2:53 pm |
  14. John

    Don't forget that Obama is also a rich man. He made a lot of money from his books, and when was the last time that Mrs. Obama worked? Before she became a mom. So, Dear Mrs. Rosen, put a mirror to the face of your friends first, before you open your mouth.

    April 12, 2012 02:53 pm at 2:53 pm |
  15. truth

    Im wewwy wewwy sowwy..... My farts do not stink, just ask me. I love the smell.


    Hilary Rosen

    April 12, 2012 02:53 pm at 2:53 pm |
  16. pmn

    As always been a working mom, I understand Rosen's point she was trying to make. However, she did have an extremely poor choice of words. It completely awes me people speak with their emotions of firing off then relaxing immediately to make a democractic statement to look at both sides. A woman who choses to stay at home to raise children..I envy as I wish I did not have to work to raise my kids. At the flipside, I am not sure I could stay home as it would keep me out of the market and be passed up for promotions as well as the trends in the working world. In my last statement, is exactly what it comes down to as state should been stated by Rosen. Women who are stay at home moms do not understand the struggles of workplace as well as the balancing act of work, kids and home. If Rosen is going to go public and speak about working women as well as working moms can you at least represent us with some good solid viewpoints. As for tje Romney's they definitely need to talk to the public more to get in touch with their subject and not use each other as comparison with the public or working women it does make them look completely ignorant.

    April 12, 2012 02:53 pm at 2:53 pm |
  17. Rita

    Looks like Debbie Wasserman Schultz, DNC chair, isn't the only one who "needs to tone it down a bit."

    April 12, 2012 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  18. Romney is not My Hero

    Yes, Mrs. Car Elevator had such a hard time raising five boys all by herself. I will remember to weep for her during my evening prayers. *rolling eyes so much they might come out of my head*

    OBAMA 2012!

    April 12, 2012 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  19. AZWoman

    This politicalization regarding women is absolutely ridiculous. I don't care what you party affiliation is. I as a woman am not influenced because of the rhetoric in this campaign season. It is simply an insult to believe that I am going to cast my vote because of what the democrats say about birth control being women's health (GOPs War on Women) much less the ignorance of a liberal women who obviously has a problem with stay at home moms and is now trying to change what she meant. I will vote for the person that will help me to succeed in life (both socially and financially). But more importantly that will stop taking my money to give to others less fortunate and allow me to take care of my extended family that are homeless, jobless and struggling to survive. I can't do both.

    April 12, 2012 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  20. philtrips

    It is very frustrating and unfortunate when people are forced to apologize for speaking the truth... If the woman never worked , that's fine... No one is judging her for having a successful husband, or for deciding to stay home and raise her family, which is an extremely difficult duty, by the way. (If) The reality is that she has never worked "in the workforce" a day in her life... And it would indeed be extremely difficult for her to relate to the plight of the working woman... Why should one need to apologize for pointing out that fact (if it is indeed the case).... all season is silly season in politics, folks. very sad that these are our "leaders".

    April 12, 2012 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  21. nobody important

    My mother is one of the hardest working women I know, and raised me as a stay at home mom. She was also extremely well- informed on economic and public policy issues.

    April 12, 2012 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  22. Walter

    To paraphrase Ms. Rosen, spare you faux apology. You said it, you meant it, and it will be used throughout the campaign. Please keep talking Hilary, it can't help but improve Romney's chances.

    April 12, 2012 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  23. TSuisei

    Rosen should not have apologized. And to Karen at 2:31 pm: Shut-up and go back to your soaps. You have no clue what this issue is about. Most children of middle-class families do not have a stay-at-home parent because their parents DO NOT have that choice. You, Karen, should also be the subject of ridicule for having stated that parent's who "stick their kids in daycare to head back to a comfortable" job have "taken the easy way out."

    April 12, 2012 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  24. Rudy NYC


    White House visitor logs indicate that “Hilary Rosen” visited the White House 35 times
    Ever heard of the White House press corps? They meet in that little room in the basement called the press briefing room. I am sure that every major media outlet has at least one reporter who has visited the White House that number of times. Your scandal is a sham. Someone pulled the wool over your low forehead, covering your eyes.

    April 12, 2012 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  25. Paul

    Please keep spewing this rhetoric around Dems. Stay at home mom's on the left and right will remember them this Novenber. Liberals detest anything considered traditional. They mock stay at home moms, mock the central family unit, mock religion, and think they are oh so enlightened. Now of course Rosen would have nothing but praise for a gay couple with kids and one of the parents stays home to raise them. Hypocrisy at it's nasty, vile liberal best.

    April 12, 2012 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
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