Mrs. Romney’s tired motherhood talking point

Ann Romney, front left, wife of Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney.  (AP Photo/Steven Senne)
Ann Romney, front left, wife of Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney. (AP Photo/Steven Senne)
Steven Senne / AP


Ann Romney celebrated her life as a mother in a column appearing in USA Today ahead of Mother’s Day this coming Sunday. She shared personal tidbits such as the fact that her husband and Republican nominee for president Mitt Romney brings her lilacs each Mother’s Day and that she had never held a baby until her first son was born.

I hesitate to call this an “Op-Ed” as other outlets have, because it doesn’t match the substantive makeup of those authored by recent First Ladies, such as Michelle Obama and Laura Bush who have written on a range of subjects, including women’s rights, military families, healthy food options, and safe sex, among others.

You can read the full Romney column at USA Today here:

Cherish your mothers. The ones who wiped your tears, who were at every ball game or ballet recital. The ones who believed in you, even when nobody else did, even when maybe you didn’t believe in yourself.

Women wear many hats in their lives. Daughter, sister, student, breadwinner. But no matter where we are or what we’re doing, one hat that moms never take off is the crown of motherhood.

There is no crown more glorious.

It’s hard to see the point of Romney’s byline piece except as a crudely disguised effort by the campaign to continue to put the candidate’s wife forward as the friendly, warmer face of their election effort, which is desperately trying to appeal to more women – an area where President Obama excels.

Since the much debated Hilary Rosen comment that Mrs. Romney had “actually never worked a day in her life,” the Romney campaign has been playing the underappreciated mom card. The pro-Romney super PAC Restore Our Future even has a new video out praising Ann Romney who “raised five boys,” and mocking Rosen.


Shame on USA Today for demanding so little from its contributor and allowing for such a dull piece of work to take up limited space. An Op-Ed on the biggest issues facing American mothers, or tackling just one of the many, from the potential next First Lady would have been more worthy of a national newspaper, rather than a piece that closely resembles the frequent, overly friendly campaign emails supporters and journalists are accustomed to reading from all candidates.

Perhaps as the campaign revs up further, we’ll hear more from Ann Romney about the issues she cares about, rather than a continuation of the already tired talking point that she is a mother. And let’s face it. This is not a unique title to hold given all of us who make up the world’s 7 billion population are born to a mother.