Wake Up and Smell the Rosen
Democratic strategist Hilary Rosen is proving to be a thorn in the side of the manufactured “War on Women” campaign. After making the comment that presidential candidate Mitt Romney’s wife “hasn’t worked a day in her life,” social media sites and cable news pundits have erupted in criticism.
How could an advocate for the democratic party, a Lesbian/Gay/Bisexual/Transgender activist, mother of twins with her former partner Elizabeth Birch, and managing director at SKDKnickerbocker (a PR firm started by former White House Communications Director Anita Dunn) be so insensitive to women? Her bio at SKDKnick.com even touts her expertise in strategic communications. She is a former editor at the Huffington Post. And as Michelle Malkin points out, Rosen is no stranger to White House public relations schemes. In fact, Rosen has visited the White House at least 35 times since President Obama took office. According to White House visitor logs, Rosen has had numerous meetings with press staff, Obama campaign manager Jim Messina, FLOTUS BFF and top advisor to the president Valerie Jarrett and at least 5 meetings with the president himself.
She MUST have known the “Republicans hate women” media diversion strategy.
Within hours of the statement airing on CNN, David Axelrod, Obama campaign PR guru, publicly denounced Rosen’s comments. Jim Messina took out his contempt for Rosen’s statement on Twitter. A Huffington Post blog suggests Rosen should do more than apologize and donate to MS Foundation. Even First Lady Michelle Obama tweeted about it saying, “Every mother works hard and every women deserves to be respected.”
The almost immediate response from the White House and other leftwing talking heads seems to indicate strategy versus reaction.
An interesting string of events.
In the months before a Georgetown law student gave fake testimony in a fake hearing about her friends attending a law school that costs tens of thousands of dollars per year having trouble affording contraception, President Obama’s poll numbers among women were down significantly from 2008.
In keeping with the “Republicans hate women” campaign, SKDKnickerbocker (yes the same Anita Dunn PR firm mentioned earlier) trotted out their client, Sandra Fluke, with her sob story of too much sex/not enough free condoms. This was on the heels of the Obama administration’s attack on the Catholic Church and that horribly obvious orchestrated debate question from former Clinton senior political advisor George Stephanopolous about contraception at the Hew Hampshire GOP debate.
President Obama has been working feverishly to regain favor with the 20% of female voters that have moved to the “disapprove” column in recent Gallup polls. The president publicly supported Ms. Fluke and gave her a personal phone call. He attempted to force religious institutions to provide birth control and abortions via the Health Care Reform policy and weighed in on Augusta National’s policy on women even though he wasn’t asked. But none of the campaign’s efforts seem to be working. As of April 12, Obama’s approval rating among women is still less than 50%.
Enter Hilary Rosen.
As Obama’s poll numbers continue to slip among female voters, perhaps it was time for a new scapegoat to get the campaign out of this messy “war on women” business. Rosen has since apologized to Ann Romney, mother of 5 suffering with Multiple Sclerosis and cancer survivor, but not before the White House, campaign strategists and the First Lady had a chance to publicly denounce Rosen.
It was Anita Dunn who once said the campaign “controlled” the news media and only let them hear what the campaign wanted them to play on their news programs. We’ll have to see if the latest PR stunt provides the approval ratings for which they are hoping.