Steinem told New York magazine that the story gained legs because the Romney campaign looked to capitalize off the inopportune statement.
“It was impossible not to pay attention because Romney used it so politically," Steinem said. "All [Rosen] did was leave off two words. For pay. She hasn’t worked [a day in her life] for pay. And she should’ve put those words on. But it’s ridiculous to make such a carnival out of this."
But Steinem did concede that it was important to recognize the importance of working mothers.
“The women’s movement has spent 40 years saying there are women who work at home and women who work outside the home, in order to make clear that homemakers work harder than any class of worker," Steinem said.
But the feminist author went on to say that Ann Romney was set apart from other working mothers because of her family's wealth.
"But what is distinguishing about the Romney situation is that they’re rich. [Ann Romney] doesn’t have to worry about money. And that’s what the Democratic consultant meant. So don’t make any more of it. It’s stupid.”
Ann Romney said earlier this week that her wealth did not mean she did not face challenges as a stay-at-home mom.
"I will say for me financial security has not been a huge issue. But that does not mean I'm not compassionate. It does not mean that I have not had different challenges. Everyone in life has their challenges, mine have not been financial," Romney told ABC News.
Steinem, meanwhile, maintained that President Obama has the best interests of women in mind between the two.
“We’ve rarely had a more clear choice," she said, "between 100 percent hostility on the Romney side and 80 percent support on the Obama side.”