The 'mommy wars': Does Ann Romney 'work'?

Hilary Rosen reignited the “mommy wars” with her condescending put-down of Ann Romney.

“You can’t blame Republicans for wanting to change the subject,” said The Nation in an editorial. From the point of view of female voters, it’s been a disastrous couple of months for the GOP, as conservatives attacked contraception coverage in health plans, right-wing icon Rush Limbaugh engaged in the “slut-shaming of Sandra Fluke,” and Mitt Romney vowed to defund Planned Parenthood. Just as the Democratic narrative of a Republican “war on women” was taking root, said Jane Mayer in, along came Hilary Rosen. A CNN pundit and longtime Democratic Party adviser, Rosen last week belittled Romney’s statement that he was getting advice on women’s economic issues from his wife. Mother-of-five Ann Romney, said Rosen, “has never worked a day in her life.” That was all it took. Just as when Hillary Clinton said she “could have just ‘stayed home and baked cookies’” in 1992, gleeful Republicans claimed that Rosen had let slip the Democrats’ contempt for women who choose homemaking over a career. Rosen quickly apologized, as President Obama and the Democrats scrambled to disown her, but it was too late: The “mommy wars” had been reignited.

Rosen meant exactly what she said, said John Guardiano in Her condescending put-down of Ann Romney was “part and parcel of a long-standing effort by many on the Left to denigrate and demean women who choose not to work outside the home.” The rearing of children is “the most important job in the world,” said Suzanne Venker in, whereas “the chronic absence of moms from the home is at the core of countless social ills.” But liberals scorn “the traditional family,” viewing it as a mortal threat to their vision of a gender-neutral utopia where kids are raised by nannies and day-care centers.

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