Ann Romney responded to CNN political contributor Hillary Rosen’s “Ann Romney had actually never worked a day in her life” comment by appearing on Fox News, claiming “she could sympathize with working women because she knows what it’s like to struggle.”
“My career choice was to be a mother,” Ann Romney told Fox News host Martha MacCallum. “And I think that all of us need to know that we need to respect choices that women make.”
Furthermore Mrs. Romney went to Twitter to affirm Rosen’s observation, writing, “I made a choice to stay home and raise five boys.” She added “Believe me, it was hard work.”
Discussion about the choices and finances of American women is one to be had. But the question is not whether or not Mrs. Romney should have taken advantage of her Harvard education and pursue a career; the question is do each and every American woman have that choice to stay at home or follow their career?
If not, why are they no longer able to do so? Could it be because a middle class family cannot afford to survive on a single income anymore? Who is responsible for the erosion of earning capacity of the middle class? How about when one parent is laid off, like many caused by her husband’s company Bain, from KB Toys to Worldwide Grinding Systems.
In fact while Bain itself has made billions of dollars for its investors, 22 percent of the companies in which Bain invested wound up either in bankruptcy or shutting their doors entirely, causing thousands of people to lose their jobs. What choice did these people have Mrs. Romney? Does she understand that her horses, cars, houses, her children’s education, her many maids, chefs, tailors, butlers, private secretaries and all other “choices” are paid by these investments?
How about the healthcare costs of a family of 7, like the Romneys, especially when one or more members has a pre-existing conditions such as MS? Does she get it that her husband has made it clear of his intention to dismantle the law which makes sure that people with MS and other maladies can’t be dumped or refused by the health insurance companies? Does she know that medical bills are the number one reason for all bankruptcies in this country?
How about the many other choices from contraception to reproductive rights that American women struggled to secure which are under constant threat, currently by her husband’s party? Does she know how many anti-choice bills were pushed through by the GOP State legislators throughout the nation since 2010? Yes, let’s talk about “choice” Mrs. Romney!
I have no personal animosity against Mrs. Romney, and I can even ignore the fact that this severely hard-working stay-at-home mother has about 4 maids for one of her several homes and drives a couple of Cadillacs, and as she puts it, even her husband does not know how many horses she owns. But what I can’t ignore is her remarkable disconnect and utter lack of awareness about the everyday lives of working or stay-at-home mothers. And this is not helping her husband’s image of the smug vulture capitalist at all.
While her husband declares on CNN that he is not concerned about the poor, Mrs. Romney acts as if she knows what that is to be poor.
I suggest Mrs. Romney stop pretending to understand what it is to be struggling to make ends meet and stop saying things like “I don’t even consider myself wealthy, which is an interesting thing” while it is public knowledge that the couple has a net worth of $250 million. An interesting thing indeed.
“Finally I recalled the stopgap solution of a great princess who was told that the peasants had no bread, and who responded: Let them eat cake.” Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Confessions.
P.S Yes, I am aware of that it is not proven Marie Antoinette has ever said “let them eat cake” and there are many versions of the story; we hope and assume as we write, our readers are intelligent enough to get the pun.