Let's start this post with a personal TMI anecdote: many moons ago, I was going out with this guy who had been acting terribly shady for awhile. I had a feeling he was cheating on me, and the next time he was at my house, I asked him about it. "Are you cheating on me?" His response, which I'd later learn was among the Now! That's What I Call a Cheater! greatest hits collection: "How could you ask me that?!" Lesson: when people refuse to answer germane questions, it's either because they don't know the answer, or because they have a feeling that you'll hate their answers more than their silence. They are often correct.
Which brings me to Ann Romney's continued refusal to answer questions about how she feels about, well, any issue of substance at all: she knows that what she thinks is probably unpalatable to the very demographic that she's campaigning to court — women voters. But women are not that easily fooled.
During an interview with an Iowa TV station that was taped today and will air tomorrow, Mrs. Romney, in an attempt to reach out to women who may feel hesitant about supporting her weird robo-husband. "My message, really was, ‘women, I hear your voices,' and the interesting thing about this economy, this tough economy that we're going through, is that women have been hit the hardest. And I wanted to make sure that women of America knew that we have been across this country for the last year and a half and we are very aware of how tough it is for them," she opined to open the interview. She gets it, you guys! She hears you!
But when pressed and asked about the issue of birth control access and same-sex marriage, issues on which women tend to skew liberal, she balked, denying the interviewer any answers to substantial questions. Witness the tap dance:
KWQC TV6: "Here in Iowa, as you know, same-sex marriage is legal. Do you believe a lesbian mother should be allowed to marry her partner?"
Ann Romney: "You know, I'm not going to talk about the specific issues. I'm going to let my husband speak on issues. I'm here to really just talk about my husband and what kind of husband and father he is and, you know, those are hot-button issues that distract from what the real voting issue is going to be at this election. That, it's going to be about the economy and jobs." [...]
KWQC TV6: "Do you believe that employer-provided health insurance should be required to cover birth control?"
Ann Romney: "Again, you're asking me questions that are not about what this election is going to be about. This election is going to be about the economy and jobs."
KWQC TV6: "Well, a Pew research poll shows those issues are very important to women, ranking them either "important" or "very important."
Ann Romney: "You know, but I personally believe, and this is what I'm hearing from women all across the country that they are going to look for the guy that's going to pull them out of the weeds and get them job security and a brighter future for their children. That's the message. [...] So really if you want to try to pull me off of the other messages it's not going to work because I know because I've been out there."
KWQC TV6: "Well, I don't want to pull you off any message. You just told a reporter who was questioning you in Cleveland that you want women to have a secure and stable future. I asked you about marriage and whether lesbian mothers should be allowed to marry. Isn't marriage a part of creating a stable future?"
Ann Romney: "You know, again, I'm going to talk to you about the economy and about job creation and about how my husband is the right person for the right time. This is going to be an election that is very important for women, and we are going to make sure that their economic prosperity is more certain under a President Romney."
Apparently Ann Romney doesn't understand that not having easy access to birth control is an economic issue — abortions are expensive, but not nearly as expensive as pregnancy and raising a fucking child from birth to age 18. And marriage and reproductive rights issues are jobs issues, too — kind of hard to move up the ladder when you're stuck with the prospect of paying your already-expensive daycare for overtime or cutting out of work early to tend to a toddler. Ann Romney understands you, American women — unless you're not married to a millionaire who can afford to raise five sons on his salary alone.
I don't mean to beat up on Ann Romney — she seems like a nice enough person, a devoted wife, mother, and grandmother, and a warm contrast to her husband's dead-behind-the-eyes ex bully persona. But the only jobs the Romney campaign giving the American female voter is a snow job. Mrs. Romney's interview shows that she's not overtly saying things that are not true, but she's sure willing to commit errors of omission.
I guess it's appropriate that the Romney campaign chose "BELIEVE IN AMERICA" as its slogan. You can't spell "believe" without a big "lie" in the middle.