party chat

Gloria Steinem Thinks the Whole Rosen/Romney Kerfuffle Was ‘Stupid’

Author and activist Gloria Steinem speaks on stage during the Brooklyn Museum's Sackler Center First Awards at the Brooklyn Museum on April 18, 2012 in the Brooklyn borough of New York City.
Gloria Steinem, last night. Photo: Neilson Barnard/Getty Images

At the Brooklyn Artists Ball last night, feminist icon Gloria Steinem argued that the Romney campaign made a media-circus mountain out of a semantic molehill in the Ann Romney vs. Hilary Rosen brouhaha that consumed much of last week. “It was impossible not to pay attention because Romney used it so politically,” Steinem, levitating in a flowing caftan in the lobby of the Brooklyn Museum, told us over the din of the cocktail-hour buzz. “All [Rosen] did was leave off two words. For pay. She hasn’t worked [a day in her life] for pay. And she should’ve put those words on. But it’s ridiculous to make such a carnival out of this.”

So Rosen was right about Ann Romney, then? “The women’s movement has spent 40 years saying there are women who work at home and women who work outside the home, in order to make clear that homemakers work harder than any class of worker,” Steinem said. “But what is distinguishing about the Romney situation is that they’re rich. [Ann Romney] doesn’t have to worry about money. And that’s what the Democratic consultant meant. So don’t make any more of it. It’s stupid.”

If Steinem doesn’t sound exactly pro-Romney, it’s because she’s not. “We’ve rarely had a more clear choice,” she said, “between 100 percent hostility on the Romney side and 80 percent support on the Obama side.”

Steinem: Rosen/Romney Kerfuffle Was ‘Stupid’