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UPDATE: With the media storm showing no signs of letting up, Democratic strategist Hilary Rosen on Thursday apologized to Ann Romney for saying that she "has never worked a day in her life," while at the same time suggesting that comment had been taken out of context in the name of politics.
Here's Rosen's statement (via the Washington Post):
"Let’s put the faux ‘war against stay at home moms’ to rest once and for all. As a mom I know that raising children is the hardest job there is. As a pundit, I know my words on CNN last night were poorly chosen. In response to Mitt Romney on the campaign trail referring to his wife as a better person to answer questions about women than he is, I was discussing his poor record on the plight of women’s financial struggles...
"As a partner in a firm full of women who work outside of the home as well as stay at home mothers, all with plenty of children, gender equality is not a talking point for me. It is an issue I live every day. I apologize to Ann Romney and anyone else who was offended. Let’s declare peace in this phony war and go back to focus on the substance."
The statement comes as Democrats are scrambling to distance themselves from Rosen's original comment, which quickly became a hot topic of conversation on cable news shows. Michelle Obama got in on the action with a tweet of her own that read: "Every mother works hard, and every woman deserves to be respected. –mo." (Reuters explains that tweets signed "mo" are said to be written by the first lady herself.)
You can read Dave Weigel's take on the whole thing here.
Thursday, April 12: Ann Romney has a new Twitter account. Her debut tweet? A response to Democratic strategist Hilary Rosen's jab that she has "never worked a day in her life."
"I made a choice to stay home and raise five boys," Romney tweeted, "Believe me, it was hard work."
Late Wednesday, Rosen suggested on CNN that Ann Romney's lack of work experience should disqualify her from talking about women and the economy, remarks that have been met with bipartisan condemnation, as the Associated Press notes.
Obama's campaign manager Jim Messina, along with David Axelrod, both moved quickly to distance Obama's reelection campaign from Rosen's comments.
Messina tweeted that he "could not disagree with Hilary Rosen any more strongly," adding, "her comments were wrong and family should be off limits. She should apologize." Axelrod, meanwhile, called Rosen's comments "inappropriate and offensive."
Ann Romney has become a more prominent feature on the campaign trail recently as her husband attempts to overcome a gender gap in the polls, as the Hill explains. The Romney campaign strategy for women voters focuses on the argument that the top concern of women in America is the economy, and not social issues like reproductive rights, a topic that dominated headlines earlier this year after Rush Limbaugh's inflammatory comments about a Georgetown Law student.
Rosen welcomed Ann Romney to twitter with a series of tweets elaborating on her CNN remarks: "@AnnDRomney I am raising children too. But most young American women HAVE to BOTH earn a living AND raise children. You know that don't u?" She added: "@AnnDRomney Please know, I admire you. But your husband shouldn't say you are his expert on women and the economy. #HeNeedsMore"