April 13th, 2012
02:18 AM ET
8 years ago

Republican strategist slams Democrats’ response to Hilary Rosen

(CNN) – A Republican strategist is defending Hilary Rosen following her controversial comment that Ann Romney has "never worked a day in her life."

About 24 hours after Rosen made the comment, drawing the rebuke of Democrats and Republicans alike, Bay Buchanan has come to her rescue. Rosen has since apologized for the comment.

"In this business that we are in, this awful rotten business of politics, there's no reason why you can't understand that we, being humans, are going to make mistakes sometimes - and you distance yourself from the words," Buchanan said Thursday on CNN's "Anderson Cooper 360."

But, she added, "You don't distance yourself from the person."

Rosen made the comment Wednesday on the program.

"What you have is Mitt Romney running around the country, saying, 'Well, you know, my wife tells me that what women really care about are economic issues, and when I listen to my wife, that's what I'm hearing,’ “ she said. “ Guess what? His wife has actually never worked a day in her life."

The comment drew criticism from President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden on Thursday, as well as high profile political operatives.

Romney responded to the comment on Wednesday, tweeting, "I made a choice to stay home and raise five boys. Believe me, it was hard work."

In a Thursday appearance on Fox News, she said, "We have to respect women in all those choices that they made."

Obama said "there is no tougher job than being a mom," and, "anybody who would argue otherwise, I think, probably, needs to rethink their statement." Biden said Rosen had "absolutely" overstepped, and called the language "outrageous" in an interview on MSNBC.

Republicans, including Romney advisers, sought to tie Rosen to the Democratic National Committee, Obama and the White House. They pointed to her name in White House visitor logs.

But Buchanan, who is also an adviser to Mitt Romney's presidential campaign, said Democrats went too far.

"Hilary has been enormously loyal and committed to this president, and to have them, to spend a day just trying to distance themselves, say she's not an adviser, she's not this," Buchanan said. "That is unacceptable to me. She has been too good to them, for them to treat her this way."

Rosen said she appreciated Buchanan's comments, and suggested political rhetoric needed to be dialed down.

"I think that that's going to be our challenge over the next six or seven months, is to not do this to each other and to say, you know what, I know that person, I know that they didn't mean that," she said. "Or maybe they did mean it and they need to say that they - back it up with facts."

Having apologized for the Wednesday comments, Rosen suggested she was ready to move on.
"Tomorrow we're all going to wake up and I'm going to stay off TV," she said.

Filed under: 2012 • Ann Romney
soundoff (43 Responses)
  1. arlindsay

    Keep your chin up Hillary. By the end of the election I won't be the only person who thinks you have the best part of this argument.

    April 13, 2012 03:36 am at 3:36 am |
  2. blilli

    I don't like to have to say this, but I agree with Bay Buchanan. The Democrats have hung one of their own out to dry in order to look politically correct, and I suspect they're going to pay a price with some loss of women's votes just when they were defending women's rights. I don't know why they did this with such vehemence and haste, but it definitely doesn't set well with many women. Just how many stay-at-home moms do the Democrats think are supporting them? Another shot in the foot for the Dems!

    April 13, 2012 03:40 am at 3:40 am |
  3. fred ca

    Gee, dems using women and then stabbing them in the back...both for political gain. Shocked I am. Shocked.

    April 13, 2012 06:00 am at 6:00 am |
  4. Marie MD

    Let's face it ann r made a career choice and it was to marry a millionaire and never have to worry about working for a living, getting up every morning to commute, putting up with a surly clueless boss whose IQ is less than yours, needing to do something during the day and you hope you have a job when you return the next day, if you are sick you could stay home with jno repercussion.
    These are real life experiences that I see everyday at work and what the working class has to put up with day in and day out. Not which Cadillac do I get to drive today and will it fit in our new house and our car elevator.

    April 13, 2012 06:30 am at 6:30 am |
  5. Marlee

    As much as the GOP wants to blame Obama for Rosen's comments, I, stay at home mom, hold no one but Rosen responsible. It is hard for nonparents to understand all the commitment and work that goes into being a parent.

    April 13, 2012 06:42 am at 6:42 am |
  6. Jerry

    Can't be any stupider than this. Ms.Rosen, Mr. Obama and his reelection team must be getting really desperate. I can't believe this excuse of a woman (Ms. Rosen) has absolutely no respect for other women. On the other hand, Mrs. Romney's response was very dignified.

    I do understand that as Mr. Obama's lap dog, Ms. Rosen is following his directions (orders).

    Mr. Obama did threaten that 2012 election were going to be down and dirty. At least; HE HAS KEPT THAT ONE PROMISE!!! Still, that's no excuse for these idiotic attacks.

    I guess my fellow Democrats were caught with their hand in the "kiddie". Their lame excuses and explanations were all NON STARTERS.

    Stay tuned...

    April 13, 2012 06:45 am at 6:45 am |
  7. Kjetil

    Im happy too see this interview and i think Buchanan was very right. I agree with her, and im sad about how the democrats have spoken Rosen down and made her like "small and unimportant". Thats not how too act against lojal supporters.

    April 13, 2012 06:57 am at 6:57 am |
  8. Black Iris

    Rosen's apology is weak and half-hearted. She needs to learn more about the lives of middle-class moms who can't afford nannys.

    April 13, 2012 07:39 am at 7:39 am |
  9. Craig Mellor

    Bay Buchanan's comments just goes to prove one big point......when the going gets tough all politicans tend to stick together and circle the wagons. It is basically Washington and Washington insiders against the everyday American people!!

    April 13, 2012 07:46 am at 7:46 am |
  10. jennifer lesage

    The truth is some moms have a choice wether they can stay home because financially they do not need to work.
    Most moms would rather stay and raise their children but in todays world we do not have the choice like Ann Romney had to raise her children. I think Hillary Rosen only commented that she never had to go out of the house to work so can not understand what it would be like to juggle both . she is out of touch with most americans that have no choice that is what i understood from the comment.

    April 13, 2012 07:49 am at 7:49 am |
  11. Catmandew

    Well now some loyalty that is good to see.I know that there are plenty of other issues to worry about

    April 13, 2012 07:59 am at 7:59 am |
  12. SUBS 4 VOTES

    Rosen doesn't speak for the President's campaign. Republicans look foolish trying to make a big deal out of this. I agree with the underlying point she was making however. Average American women actualy work for an employer and have to deal with issues like not getting equal pay. I don't think Ann has ever been thru that on top of being a mom.

    April 13, 2012 08:08 am at 8:08 am |
  13. dnick47

    Boohooohooooo. Repubs throw out one slur and insult after another but can never take it when it comes back, can you? The Romney are rich leeches making their money off the hopes and dreams of countless Americans who loce their livelihood to his "investment banking" – whether his wife worked at Micky D's or some other place is not the question, the question is what do there blood engouged leeches know about the hard ships of families downsized by greedy investment bankers like them.

    April 13, 2012 08:08 am at 8:08 am |
  14. Tony

    Republicans, including Romney advisers, sought to tie Rosen to the Democratic National Committee, Obama and the White House. They pointed to her name in White House visitor logs.

    Democrats should tie Eric Fehrnstrom, the Romney adviser who made the "Etch a Sketch" comment, to Romney. This would be easy since Fehrnstrom is a top Romney adviser. Democrats don't need to find Fehrnstrom's name in a visitor log.

    April 13, 2012 08:12 am at 8:12 am |
  15. DENNA

    Working moms don't have a choice in many cases. Not all of us can marry meal tickets. We have to feed our kids so so don't have the opportunity take all day to care for our kids., Ann Romney needs go stop acting injured.

    April 13, 2012 08:18 am at 8:18 am |
  16. Lynda/Minnesota

    It's always difficult to take anything Bay Buchanan says seriously. This is no exception. Looking forward, TeamRomney might want to reconsider playing the Ann Romney victim card much longer. What Rosen stated isn't anything many millions of women on both sides of the aisle haven't already discussed between themselves. To pretend otherwise is foolish.

    April 13, 2012 08:21 am at 8:21 am |
  17. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    Mittens has already claimed that the white house is waging a war on moms, and that is just another one of his lies. The GOP has promised to remove access to affordable health care for moms, eliminate food stamps for poor moms, stop funding Planned Parenthood which does cancer screening and health issues for moms, eliminate the equal pay for women act, etc. Mittens is projecting again, because he has nothing to run on.

    April 13, 2012 08:21 am at 8:21 am |
  18. Penny Marwede/Vermont

    I totally agree with Hilary Rosen. Ann Romney is not on the same planet with most women in America. The key is having the financial security to choose whether to work or not, to choose the life style for her boys... to know that she has choices with her bealth care.
    The Romney's are going to have a tough time getting down in the trenches with the rest of us..

    Penny Marwede

    April 13, 2012 08:22 am at 8:22 am |
  19. Wake up people

    I don't see where Rosen was wrong. Maybe she could have worded things better. But Ann Robmey has absolutely no idea of what the average working woman goes through daily. The average woman doesn't have maids, nannies, housekeepers, or houses with elevators. The average mom has to balance a full time job along with being a mother. That's very hard, and God forbid if you are single. No one is knocking their wealth, but please stop pretending that Mittens or Ann can relate to the average American woman. Maybe she can because of her skin tone but that's it. I wish there was this much outrage when the right refers to Mrs. Obama in the nasty ways they have in the past. This is nothing but a smokescreen to deflect the fact that Mittens nor Ann can relate to no one but the filthy rich.

    OBAMA 2012!
    We won't fall for the madness!

    April 13, 2012 08:22 am at 8:22 am |
  20. Al-NY,NY

    Sorry Bay, but this "side-entrance" slamming of Obama and the Democrats will not work. Ann Romney never worked in an office environment. Of course her 5 boys and their 5 maids must have made for a real tough day for her.....get up to see them off to school (after the maids make their customized breakfasts), then a real tough decision....back to bed? hit the gym? Sit outside and have breakfast brought to you? Maybe all? Then it's off in my Caddy (after making sure it's been properly cleaned and waxed by another one of your domestics) to do a little shopping. Should I drive or have Jeeves do it for me? Boy this is tough!!

    April 13, 2012 08:25 am at 8:25 am |
  21. David Self

    My mother raised me and my brothers and still worked. Why doesn't someone check out the rather large staff romney had. I sure she did not do too much work at home. She probably did a good job of raising her sons but what help did she have there too?

    April 13, 2012 08:25 am at 8:25 am |
  22. MaryM

    Republicans will try anything to try to get the womens vote back. President Obama has the majority of the women vote. Take a look a the polls.

    April 13, 2012 08:26 am at 8:26 am |
  23. Little Jimmy Truth

    Odd... Democrats cheered Rosen's comments in one day while others condemned her comments. Later Democrats changed their minds after Michelle Obama condemned too.

    April 13, 2012 08:38 am at 8:38 am |
  24. Bruce

    Bay Buchanan is a snake...don't think for a moment that she's on Hilary's side. She's just capitalizing on the situation to push her agenda. That is to disagree with this administration at every turn.

    April 13, 2012 08:40 am at 8:40 am |
  25. Rudy NYC

    I think the Democrats threw her under the bus. I would have simply pointed out and emphasized the fact that she doesn't work for us, and left it at that.

    April 13, 2012 08:48 am at 8:48 am |
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