Top 6 Lies Romney Has Told Women in an Election Season Full of Whoppers
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Putting aside the troubling “if” in this statement, which suggests that working women are some kind of strange new trend, Mitt’s musings reveal his sexist attitudes and general cluelessness about the challenges faced by normal American families. Women, of course, aren’t the only ones who might need to spend time with their kids. And, newsflash for Mitt, most families now have two breadwinners – not just a main breadwinner and somebody who has a supplementary job but also takes care of the children.
Flex-time is not just an issue about women taking care of kids. Many working Americans – both men and women – have eldercare responsibilities that demand their time and attention. They get sick themselves. And frankly, I don’t know how things rolled at Bain, but the emphasis on rigid schedules and face-time is increasingly considered unproductive and retrograde in today’s workplace.
And while we’re at it, what might Mitt have to say about the fact that the U.S. is one of only four countries in the freaking world (the others are Liberia, Swaziland and Papua New Guinea) that doesn't offer paid maternity leave? How’s that for workplace flexibility? An economic penalty dumped on women for procreation!
Ellen Bravo, executive director of Family Values @ Work, noted to me in an email that Romney's party "opposes any efforts to bring the workplace into the 21st century by establishing modest standards like allowing workers to earn paid sick days and creating family and medical leave insurance funds." She pointed out that "two out of five workers -- and three out of four low-wage workers -- don't earn a single paid sick day" and that "half the workforce isn't covered even by unpaid FMLA." Her message to Mitt: "Don't tell us how much you love your mother and what a great mother your wife is. Stop blocking policies that help all mothers -- and fathers -- be the parents they want to be."
Romney’s remarks clearly show that he is out of touch with women, the workplace and the needs of modern families.
6. Binder Full of Bullshit
No list of Mitt’s woman-whoppers would be complete without a nod to his declaration that as governor of Massachusetts, he had taken the initiative and gone around to women’s groups to ask for help finding qualified female candidates for his administration.
Here's what really went down: MassGap, a coalition of women’s groups put together binders filled with information on female candidates for high-level positions because they were dismayed by the lack of women in government. They approached Mitt before he took office and put the heat on him to sign a pledge to appoint more women if elected. Though he initially followed through on his promise to appoint more women, many of the most important jobs still went to men. Women got the less important positions. And the number of women declined after his first two years.
How does Romney really feel about women in his inner circle? In These Times has reported that there was a curious absence of women in top positions at Bain. And today, only four out of 49 partners are women. No wonder Mitt didn’t know any qualified women to hire when he was governor.