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Wed Oct 17, 2012, 12:45 AM

"It was tone deaf, condescending, out of touch... The phrase objectified & dehumanized women" [View all]


Mitt Romney's binders full of women just don't stack up

GOP candidate fumbles when asked about fair hiring practices for women, and the internet seizes its newest sensation

Emma G Keller
guardian.co.uk, Tuesday 16 October 2012 23.54 EDT

Mitt Romney discusses 'binders full of women' in Tuesday's debate Link to this video

In the second presidential debate, women's issues finally came up. And Mitt Romney had an opportunity to show female voters he cared. But from his bullying of moderator Candy Crowley to his dismissive description of his hiring practices, he fumbled the chance. "Binders full of women," his badly chosen phrase became the meme of the night and will likely haunt him past Halloween. Here's a deconstruction of what he had to say about women.

An important topic, and one which I learned a great deal about, particularly as I was serving as governor of my state, because I had the chance to pull together a cabinet and all the applicants seemed to be men.

Seemed to be? Implausible from the start, they either were or they weren't.

And I and I went to my staff, and I said, "How come all the people for these jobs are are all men." They said: "Well, these are the people that have the qualifications."

This is hard to believe. Romney was talking about 2003 not 1893. Plenty of women would have been properly qualified.

And I said: "Well, gosh, can't we can't we find some some women that are also qualified?"


And and so we we took a concerted effort to go out and find women who had backgrounds that could be qualified to become members of our cabinet. I went to a number of women's groups and said: "Can you help us find folks," and they brought us whole binders full of women.

ZING! There was the shot through his foot. "Binders full of women" became #bindersfullofwomen on Twitter, a Tumblr page and a Facebook page which within half an hour had over 20,000 likes. By the end of the debate that had risen to almost 70,000. Why did the phrase resonate? Because it was tone deaf, condescending and out of touch with the actual economic issues that women are so bothered about. The phrase objectified and dehumanized women. It played right into the perception that so many women have feared about a Romney administration that a president Romney would be sexist and set women back. And it turns out the way Romney presented it that he asked for a study of women in leadership positions wasn't true anyway.


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Reply "It was tone deaf, condescending, out of touch... The phrase objectified & dehumanized women" [View all]
Hissyspit Oct 2012 OP
tblue37 Oct 2012 #1
Amonester Oct 2012 #11
hatrack Oct 2012 #14
bhikkhu Oct 2012 #2
Scootaloo Oct 2012 #3
marions ghost Oct 2012 #15
Cha Oct 2012 #4
On the Road Oct 2012 #5
JimDandy Oct 2012 #6
Meandering1 Oct 2012 #10
dixiegrrrrl Oct 2012 #7
bullwinkle428 Oct 2012 #18
pokerfan Oct 2012 #8
Doodler71 Oct 2012 #9
Hissyspit Oct 2012 #12
malaise Oct 2012 #13
WinkyDink Oct 2012 #16
bullwinkle428 Oct 2012 #17
Renew Deal Oct 2012 #19