Ann Romney never feared being fired from her "job", not like her husband Mitt once claimed.
There are millions of women with children who go to work in America every day, not all because they chose a "career" over being a stay-at-home mom, but out of economic necessity. They didn't choose to go a low-paying job to bust their butts every day while being harassed by an over-bearing boss because they wanted to, but because they had to, to pay for rent and food. They didn't have the choice to stay home and ride horses while their kids were off at private schools and their husband was at the office. Many working moms work because they have to.
Most "baby boomers" remember the days when mom stayed home to see the kids come home from school, while dad was still at work, working a 40-hour-a-week job to pay the mortgage and car payment. Since those days, a 2-income family has become a necessity...and latch key kids and daycare centers have become common in our society. Read my post: Will 2 Paychecks Be Enough in 2012?
I'm quite sure Mrs. Romney worked real hard while she was waking up early in
the morning to shuttle her kids off to private school in one of her two Cadillacs
- - - trying to maneuver around all those big yellow school buses - - - all
while her husband was also very busy "working hard" as he was laying
off the working moms of those children that were riding in those big yellow school
And if Ann Romney supports her husband, then she's also against worker's rights, equal pay for women, and women's healthcare. Because she never had to work a day in her life [for an employer that she financially relied on for a paycheck]. Ann Romney never had a reason to care about such issues in her life of privilege.
And Ann Romney's nannies, maids, chauffeurs, cooks, and social planners are also very upset. "How dare someone accuse Ann Romney of never having worked. She's done a lot of work raising those boys, at least if proxy work counts."
A Democratic consultant suggested that the wife of wealthy Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney shouldn't be talking about the economy's toll on women. "Guess what, his wife has actually never worked a day in her life," said consultant Hilary Rosen on CNN.
The remark inspired Ann Romney's debut on Twitter. "I made a choice to stay home and raise five boys," she wrote. "Believe me, it was hard work."
Oh really? Tell us Ann, how much harder was it than for a woman who has to go to a
"regular" low-paying job AND raise her children.
Obama campaign manager Jim Messina said in a tweet, “I could not disagree with Hilary Rosen any more strongly. Her comments were wrong and family should be off limits. She should apologize."
Family should be off limits? Hilary should apologize? But if Ann Romney is voluntarily jumping into the mix on her husband's campaign trail, supporting her husband's stand on women's issues, doesn't that also make Mrs. Romney fair game as well? Ann's a big girl. She campaigning for First Lady!
Top Obama campaign strategist David Axelrod also tweeted his disapproval, “Also Disappointed in Hilary Rosen’s comments about Ann Romney. They were inappropriate and offensive.”
How was it offensive? How? Hilary Rosen's comment was spot on! If Ann Romney is going to debate her opinions, shouldn't she also be open to fair criticism? Obama's people know full well that Hilary Rosen was correct in her assessment of Ann Romney. Are they just throwing Hilary Rosen under the bus to appear as though they're traveling the "high road" on this issue?
Gaspard said on MSNBC "What she said was absolutely out of bounds. Ann Romney is someone who obviously has worked hard to raise five good boys and she's made some tough choices in her life, I'm certain. Families should be absolutely out of bounds in this discussion."
First of all, who the hell is Gaspard? And how is it "obvious" she worked hard? Was Ann sweating? And what "tough choices" did Ann ever have to make? Choosing between Yves Saint Laurent, Coco Chanel, Christian Dior, Calvin Klein, Ralph Lauren, Gianni Versace, Valentino Garavani, or Giorgio Armani when she last went shopping? Half of all "working women" go to Wal-Mart.
And again, why was it "out of bounds" if Ann Romney was the one who piped up first, claiming to know what matters most to average working women? Her husband doesn't have a clue either. They have lived in the "top 1% bubble" all their lives.
I'm quite sure that most people, just like myself, interrupted Hilary Rosen's remark to mean what it really means, that Ann Romney never had to fear being fired by an employer, putting her (and her children) in dire jeopardy of becoming hungry and homeless. Not like the Romney's domestic help might fear.
Ann Romney could afford NOT to use birth control, coming from a background of wealth and privilege. She never had to worry about working to support herself and children like most "ordinary" American women do. Ann Romney never had to worry about losing time from work to pay the rent while caring for her children. Ann Romney never had to worry about paying for the cost of birth of her children or their medical bills.
But I have to admit, for a woman with three houses and sixteen grandkids, Ann Romney doesn't have very much help around the house, that according to her 2010 tax return.
IRS forms released by the Romney's show that despite reporting income of $21.7 million, the couple paid only $20,603 in taxable wages for household help in 2010. About what a "working woman" working full-time for a whole year earns.
But this number is only for one house, and the Romneys have three houses -- a 2,000 sq. ft. townhouse in Belmont, Mass., a 5,400 sq. ft. lake house on 11 acres in Wolfeboro, N.H., and a beach house in La Jolla, Calif., that is undergoing renovations to double its size. Recently they decided to install an elevator for their cars. (It's hard work carrying those groceries to the kitchen.)
This household help in 2010 was divided among four women: Rosania Costa ($4,808), Kelli Harrison ($8,667), Susan Moore ($2,238) and Valerie Cravens Anae ($4,890). Kelli Harrison was paid for personal assistant-type tasks and errands. Valerie Cravens was paid for domestic work. The other two women listed as "domestic employees".
The designation of household employees is broad, and can include housekeepers, baby-sitters, personal assistants and other house-related tasks.
It's possible that the Romney's hired an outside cleaning service to clean their houses and that managed the payroll, but the campaign declined to elaborate on their arrangement. Given the private nature of jobs like these, most high-profile individuals prefer to maintain their own staffs of people who know them well and who they trust. Ann Romney only had to worry about who to trust..."hard work".
Mitt Romney had said: "I like being able to fire people who provide services to me. If someone doesn't give me the good service I need, I'm going to go get somebody else to provide that service to me."
For most jobs in the U.S., everyone is an "at will" employee. This means you can be fired for any reason or no reason at all, as long as that reason doesn't violate the law (such as age discrimination). Ann Romney never had to worry about age discrimination. If she were like most other "normal" working women, at her age (born in 1949), she might today.
Legally, businesses retain the right to fire people at will, but usually wait to build a case for "willful misconduct" in order to escape paying for unemployment benefits. Ann Romney never had to worry about being fired, or receiving unemployment benefits, like most "normal" working moms.
Like all Republicans, Mitt Romney is also for "right-to-work" laws (which are anti-labor union laws) "If you’re a middle-class wage-earner stuck paying union dues, pro-union actions have picked your pocket when union dues were forcibly deducted from your paycheck."
It's not that the Republicans really care about whether or not a worker has union dues deducted from their paychecks, but how the money is spend. Besides just administrative costs and negotiating union contracts for fair wages and healthcare benefits, unions also donate money to the Democrats, because they care more about worker's rights.
"...significantly de-funding the political machine that keeps progressivism, liberalism, socialism and other evil “isms” alive from election to election." In the Romneys' world, half the country is "evil", and the top 1% are the Chosen Ones.
Republicans get most of their money from corporate interests, who mostly don't care about worker's rights, fair wages, and their employee's health. By voting for "right to work laws", Republicans want to de-fund the Democratic party and hold a monopoly on politics in this country...and thereby continue an unabated assault on the working-class, pushing more out of the middle-class and into poverty.
Ann Romney never had to worry about having union dues deducted from her paycheck, or losing her status as "middle-class". She and her husband were both born with silver spoons in their mouth.*
Mitt Romney was lecturing steel workers about his theory that federal government employees are “making a lot more money than we are.” Who is that fictional “we” in that sentence? And was his wife included?
"We have to cut back on the scale of the federal government," Romney declared. "And for me that will start by reducing federal employees by 10 percent." Ann Romney never had to worry about having budget cuts that would eliminate her job and her only source of income, like other working moms.
In reality, over the years government workers have only been getting cost-of-living adjustments in their wages, while wages in the private sector (thanks to those like Ann's husband) remained stagnant. And since the Great Depression and World War II, the U.S. government has always been America's largest employer. Today Wal-Mart is the second largest and employs 1.4 million Americans in the United States — McDonalds, about 700,000. And most of those are non-union low-paying part-time jobs with no healthcare or other benefits. This is the "private sector" that the Republicans and the Romneys feverishly support.
Mitt Romney sees no need to increase the minimum wage either...as he says, "not right now". The business community also says that "now" is not a good time to raise taxes either, even though they have $2.5 trillion hoarded away in corporate treasuries. It seems as though raising taxes on the rich, or raising the minimum wage for the poor, is NEVER a good time for the business community. Ann Romney never had to worry about earning a "minimum wage" as a stay-at-home mom.
And Mitt Romney's campaign was stone silent when asked about his support of the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, regarding equal-pay for women. Ann Romney never had to worry about "equal pay" while working hard to help raise her five sons. But she claims to know what working women care about. (Total B.S.)
Republicans have also been pushing for easing VISA restrictions for "skilled foreign workers", further undermining our domestic workforce, displacing our current college graduates, increasing domestic unemployment, and depressing worker's wages. Ann Romney never had to worry about being displaced by a foreign worker earning less than she.
Last year Representative Betty Sutton, in a speech to the House of Representatives, noted that since the Bush years, America
has lost over 56,000 factories to outsourcing jobs overseas for cheaper labor. (Politifact rated her claim "true".) Ann Romney never had
to worry about her job being outsourced, or her place of employment shutting down.
Following her interview by CNN’s Anderson Cooper about the war on women Hilary Rosen tweeted, “I’ve nothing against @AnnRomney. I just don’t want Mitt using her as an expert on women struggling $ to support their family. She isn’t.”
But in all fairness to Ann Romney, she's not waging a war against women. Just like her husband, she's waging a war against ALL
working people worth less than $1 million a year in annual earnings....those who can't afford nannies,
gardeners, chauffeurs, cooks, "social planners" and private schools.
If Ann Romney considers JUST raising children a REAL job, when she has access to hundreds of millions of dollars, then what makes her so different than billions of other child bearers going back hundreds of thousands of years?
Ann Romney needs to get a REAL job, and stop blathering about things she has no knowledge of. And Obama's people should decline commenting any further on this bogus "controversy".
* SUB-NOTE: Ann and Mitt Romney met when they were very young and both going to private schools while living in Bloomfield Hills, which has consistently ranked as one of the top five wealthiest cities in the United States. Years later while Mitt was dodging the draft in France during the Vietnam War, Ann dated future business academic Kim S. Cameron. She sent Mitt a "Dear John" letter while Mitt sent letters back, imploring her to wait for him. She did, and they were married when he returned.