April 12th, 2012
01:54 PM ET
9 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. ray

    In keeping with her obsession with the word "Faux", she offers a faux apology?
    Classic BS!

    April 12, 2012 03:04 pm at 3:04 pm |
  2. travisgentry

    I'm sure the crew of nannies tasked with watching over the Romney kids appreciates the apology.

    April 12, 2012 03:04 pm at 3:04 pm |
  3. jody

    Someone who marries a millioinaire has a "choice" of staying home or working outside the home. Thos of us who did not marry a millionaire sometimes don't have a "choice." Know I didn't. Obama/Biden 2012.

    April 12, 2012 03:04 pm at 3:04 pm |
  4. snowdogg

    Her work at home is valuable but I'm betting she's never had to worry about paying her bills since marrying Mitt.

    April 12, 2012 03:05 pm at 3:05 pm |
  5. Donnie the Lion

    Raising kids is REALLY hard....I wouldn't call it a job. You can walk away from a job. It is more significant than that. Having money makes it easier, no question. Ann Romney was in a position to hire people to help her out, something a lot of us can't do. I also wouldn't use the term "war against women." "War" should only be used to refer to a military war. People are attacking, insulting, undermining, humiliating, and taking advantage of women here in the U.S. There are people in the U.S. who either do not trust, or are intimidated by, strong, independent women. They should work on building a time machine so they can return to the 17th century. It is 2012, women are in a position to become our nation's dominant gender in the coming years....let us support that. Lord knows we've already seen what happens when old white dudes run the show year after year.

    April 12, 2012 03:05 pm at 3:05 pm |
  6. David

    David Axelrod, President Obama, and other Democrats should be ashamed for not coming to Ms. Rosen's defense. Everyone knew what she meant. As a very wealthy stay at home mom, Ann Romney has never had to worry about the economy because she knew she and her children were financially taken care of. This was never about women working outside the home vs. those who choose to stay at home and everyone knows it. Once again the misleading Republicans have been able to seize the message and the hapless Democrats are apologizing again. Does any Democratic leader other than Hillary Clinton have any balls?

    April 12, 2012 03:05 pm at 3:05 pm |
  7. Jason Marks

    well in her own words: Spare me the faux apology. now kids go take a time out and think about your silly words and deeds. lmao

    April 12, 2012 03:06 pm at 3:06 pm |
  8. Chicago Mom

    @ John 3:16 neither is a white Lesbian mother of 2 adopted african american children, So I guess what she has to say about what is important to American women isn't valid. just sayin...

    April 12, 2012 03:06 pm at 3:06 pm |
  9. anon

    Alot of the problems with single, or married working moms is the fact that they chose poorly on the kind of "men" they allowed themselves to associate with and bed. They will go to a sperm donor clinic and demand the best, yet when it comes to who they will lay down and make a tricycle motor with, then it's anything goes. There are exceptions, true, but much of the time, this is the main problem. It goes both ways. Men have this problem also.

    April 12, 2012 03:06 pm at 3:06 pm |
  10. Donnie the Lion

    Mitt Romney's pledge to America: Caviar on every plate, and an elevator in every garage.

    April 12, 2012 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  11. Anonymous

    Raising kids is absolutely the hardest job in life, for both mother and father...BUT raising these kids, maintaining a successful career and being the "woman" of the house is extremely difficult and I don't think there is anything more difficult and fulfilling than this in life. It's a fact that working moms work more than stay at home moms. This isn't meant to make the stay at home moms feel less-than. Don't be so sensitive....

    April 12, 2012 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  12. Capitalists

    With a Political advisor like Rosen working for Obama she's obviously not very good at her job. She must have lost her mind!

    April 12, 2012 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  13. Woman In California


    @Thomas Fren
    The Romney's did not have maids and cooks etc. Many Mormons with large families do not get maids, cooks, nannies, gardeners etc. even if they can aford to hire help. They teach there kids to work by giving them chores.

    Prove it.

    April 12, 2012 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  14. makessense

    Apologize for what? As an independent, I believe she told the truth. Like it or not, Mrs. Romney was kept barefoot and pregnant. Well, maybe not barefoot. She probably had several pair of golden slippers, but why hate? This is America, and parenting isn't a career, it's a duty.

    April 12, 2012 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  15. yoshiknows

    To my fellow Americans – this is how these elitist Democrats think – they are anti-family, anti-religion and anti-work. I see it all over the web – they mock Christians (look at TV) and they mock mainstream families who are basically middle-income Americans trying to raise a family and lead a decent life. Sure, the Christian right go to extremes against gays, but the Dems are also attacking decent, hard-working traditional Americans. These Dems leaders and their Hollywood cohorts live on the coasts and make fun of the rest of America – do we want these people running our government? Heck no.

    April 12, 2012 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  16. dman6015

    Out of touch, maybe? From a 2007 campaign NYTimes article:

    "During her rehabilitation from her initial attack, she took up dressage, going from a novice so weak that she could barely sit in the saddle to a winner of top amateur medals. She sometimes enters professional-level contests, against the advice of her trainer, Jan Ebeling. “She wants to measure herself against the best,” he said.

    Dressage is a sport of seven-figure horses and four-figure saddles. The monthly boarding costs are more than most people’s rent. Asked how many dressage horses she owns, Mrs. Romney laughed. “Mitt doesn’t even know the answer to that,” she said. “I’m not going to tell you!”

    April 12, 2012 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  17. Meglebdon

    Bravo Rosen! I'm sure Ann Romney knows how hard it is to be a mom, but a working mom/dad? Rosen was stating a fact about Romney, why back track? She didn't down stay at home moms at all. The "hardest job there is" is being a good parent and supporting your family all at once, for both men and woman....it adds a whole different level of stress. Working parent's day consists of -rushing to get to/from work/school, maybe have a bad day at work, a boss screaming at you, being afraid to stand up to him in fear of losing your job,,,,,,then come home and hold it all in and smile for your kids, feed them, school work, ect. Stay at home parent's average day-smile for your kids, feed them, school work, ect...... Come on...... how can that compare............

    April 12, 2012 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  18. Peggy - TX

    No need to apologize... she just stated like it is.
    When I first heard Romney refer to his wife as the person he consults with to explain to him the issues that women have and then he said she told him that they want jobs for their kids... pause... and themselves. I had the impression that he has very little idea of the issues of women and really could care less. I will guess that in Romney’ world, government should take care of the men and the men take care of the women. Most likely he deals primarily with men on a daily basis and he has very little discussion with women outside narrow professional topics related to his business and campaign. Also, at that time I heard his statements, I thought that his wife, being so extremely dependent on him her whole adult life for absolutely everything, is hardly an expert on what women want and need from government nor the right person to talk about the issues of working women.

    April 12, 2012 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  19. stacy jackson

    Even in her 'apology,' Rosen's arrogance shines through.

    April 12, 2012 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  20. Zoey

    I'm disappointed in Hilary that she apologized. Everyone knows the Romney's don't have a clue.
    I think you would be hard pressed to find anyone working if they didn't have to. Come on people.

    April 12, 2012 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  21. Pro Death

    She stayed at home and raised her kids? Well bully for her, isn't everyone supposed to do that and the majority of us do it without nannies, house keepers, servants and cooks.

    April 12, 2012 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  22. Mike

    Good I'm glad she apologized. Mrs. Romney, her nannies, and her housekeepers were all offended. Mitt was so upset he had to cool himself with a fan of $100 bills.

    April 12, 2012 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  23. Scott Wallace

    My Mom would have had a much easier time raising her 5 kids if she had Romney's millions instead of the 30K my dad made. Ms. Rosen has nothing to apologize for.

    April 12, 2012 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  24. lisa

    It seems as though the democratic party only cares about women who work. Dems have always put down women who choose to stay at home with their kids. Its as if I haven't reached my full potential in life. I would much rather choose to stay at home and raise children who can contribute to society in a positive way. It seems to me the Democratic party are the ones who are at war with women!!! If they are not than why are women underpaid by 18% in this white house versus men?

    April 12, 2012 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  25. Connie

    Phoney war? I say it matches your faux apology... Damage control, failed.................

    April 12, 2012 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
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