by Patricia J. Williams for The Nation
“I learned a great deal,“ said Mitt Romney when asked about women’s pay equity during Tuesday’s debate. He was referring to his term as governor of Massachusetts, when, while assembling his senior staff, he became golly-gee-gobsmacked by the fact that “all the applicants seemed to be men.” Romney was governor of Massachusetts from 2003 till 2007, not the dark ages, so this lack of women in his world seems to have come to him later in life than most. Nor is it a question he seems yet to have asked about the upper management ranks of Bain Capital Private Equity (twenty-four women out of 164), Bain Capital Ventures (three out of thirty-six), or the Republican Party leadership for that matter.
But better late than never, right? Clueless, brand-spanking-new Governor Mitt then proceeded to interrogate his staff: “How come all the people for these jobs are all men…” How come, indeed. However in the world? Pray decipher this mysterious riddle. The answer envelope please: “Well these are the people who have the qualifications.”
Well gosh,” said Mitt, who apparently lives in a world where “gosh” is acceptable parlance among hepcats, ”can’t we find some women that are also qualified?” Well gosh yes, Mr. Romney! And the next thing you know, he and his team were making “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 …
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