Mitt Romney’s wife, Ann, has emerged as one of his best assets on the stump – both as a campaigner and a fundraiser. If he comes across as a bit stilted, she is warm and authentic. He is more relaxed when he’s with her, creating a dilemma for the campaign: How much to send her out on her own events and how much to keep her at Mitt’s side. Their photogenic family of five sons, five daughters-in-law, and 16 grandchildren also helps warm up Mitt’s image. But lest anyone complain that the Romneys are a bit too perfect, Ann’s health issues help keep it real.
Ann Romney also helped the campaign score a few points when Democratic consultant Hilary Rosen dissed her economic expertise, saying “she has actually never worked a day in her life.” Mrs. Romney, a stay-at-home mom, suddenly was thrust into the middle of the tempest.
“I made a choice to stay home and raise five boys. Believe me, it was hard work,” she said in her inaugural tweet.
A few days later, Mrs. Romney squandered a bit of her victory when she was overheard telling a private audience how pleased she was to be attacked. “It was my early birthday present for someone to be critical of me as a mother, and that was really a defining moment, and I loved it," she said April 15 at a fundraiser in Palm Beach, Fla.
But Mrs. Romney is still an important asset to the campaign; Romney advisers hope she can help her husband reduce his yawning deficit with women voters.