Former New York Times Writer Scours Romney Binder Remarks as 'Comical' and Ruinous

Count former New York Times writer Virginia Heffernan as one of the media feminists who wanted to hit Mitt Romney with a binder for about a week. From her digital macrame rug on Yahoo News, Heffernan wrote an entire column insisting "The remark did not accomplish what he’d hoped. In fact, it tipped the hand of Romney’s women panic so thoroughly that it’s likely his court-the-undecided-females’ game is now thrown."

"Plus, it misses the mark of normalcy so absolutely that he comes off as comical," she guessed. "No wonder it became a meme on Twitter and other social media sites. Just in case the humor seems opaque, let me offer a binder full of analysis."

First, his answer to a question about the grave subject of wage inequality flaunts his gender bias: In his anecdote, Romney ostentatiously refuses to consider qualified applicants just because they’re men.

Second, Romney in this instance was hiring for positions largely about optics: He wanted women in his cabinet so he could say he had women in his cabinet. He recruited women to be women—not cabinet members.

As if when Bill Clinton made a Cabinet designed to "look like America," it wasn't about optics? Would Heffernan argue that scandal figures like Janet Reno and Hazel O'Leary were the best America had to offer? Feminists think it's only about "optics" when the women aren't liberals or radical lefties. It continued:

Third, the binders response raises the specter of a still more hideous idea. Before answering the question, Romney had been reminded that women earn about 72 percent what their male counterparts do—and his response was to say, “Exactly! That’s why, given half a chance, I hire women!” Bottom line, Romney recruits women because they look good and they come cheap.

The remark has done more than alienate women, for whom—as all recent data confirms—no one needs to do any special favors. For years, and to the despair of mothers of sons, females have been far more educated and better qualified than male applicants for almost anything. They also get jobs easily and don’t need someone searching high and low for binders of resumes. They just need to get paid fairly for what they do.

Lastly, Romney’s remark exposed something on flagrant display all night. It’s that he’s a boss—and only a boss. He sees everything from the throne of a massive realm: Massachusetts, Bain Capital, and the many businesses he’s “had the privilege of staffing,” or however he puts it.

Feminists never see a danger in arguing from a position of female supremacy, that women have been "far more educated and better qualifed than male applicants for almost anything." If that's the case, why is she favoring Obama for president?

Tim Graham
Tim Graham
Tim Graham is Executive Editor of NewsBusters and is the Media Research Center’s Director of Media Analysis