Action Alert!

Obama's problem with Moms

By Phil Lawler ( bio - articles - email ) | Apr 13, 2012

If you were working for Mitt Romney’s presidential campaign this week, I’m sure you couldn’t have imagined any public statement that would have helped your candidate as much as the mindless burst from Democratic strategist Hilary Rosen that Ann Romney “has actually never worked a day in her life.”

Even in the most heated debates of the Republican primary season, no GOP operative was foolish enough to attack Ann Romney. First, because while the candidate himself is fair game, it’s ungracious to criticize his spouse. Second, because Ann Romney is a pleasant and attractive woman, who doesn’t give critics any real opportunities. And third, because as a survivor of one serious disease (cancer) who continues to battle with another (multiple sclerosis), she commands public sympathy.

But most of all, Rosen’s swipe at Ann Romney was stupid because it showed contempt for her work as a mother. James Taranto has it right, entitling his Wall Street Journal column “The Battle of All Mothers.” Every American who plans to vote in November has a mother. Not many of those voters will be pleased to think that the Democrats believe Mom “never worked a day in her life.”

What’s next for the Obama campaign? Will some Democratic strategist condemn apple pie, or endorse the man-eating shark?

President Obama himself didn’t help matters when he commented that Michelle never had the “luxury” of staying home with their children. So Obama (who, by the way, was pulling in a six-figure salary during his daughters’ early years) thinks stay-at-home Moms are living in luxury? That won’t be a winning argument, either—especially when taxpayers are footing the bill for the Obama family’s flight to their latest vacation spot.

Millions of ordinary American women are spending their lives the way Ann Romney has spent her life: caring for their families. Millions more would jump at the chance to do the same, if only they could. Belittling those women is a brilliant strategy, if your goal is to alienate American voters.

Phil Lawler has been a Catholic journalist for more than 30 years. He has edited several Catholic magazines and written eight books. Founder of Catholic World News, he is the news director and lead analyst at See full bio.

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  • Posted by: AgnesDay - Apr. 14, 2012 2:39 PM ET USA

    Hillary I and II are both symptoms of the materialistic age we live in, where nothing which cannot be measured in dollars and cents has any value.

  • Posted by: - Apr. 13, 2012 12:49 PM ET USA

    I'm reminded of Hilary Clinton's remark way back in the 1990's that she, at least, hadn't stayed home and baked cookies (paraphrase). The Left's contempt for mothers is a staple of that world view. Still, it didn't keep Bill from getting elected (twice). Makes you wonder . . . .