Mitt Romney Really Did Have Literal Three-Ring ‘Binders Full Of Women’

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April 11, 2017 11:52 a.m.

Former Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney’s comment about “binders full of women” wasn’t just a gaffe that launched a thousand Halloween costumes, according to a report published Tuesday by the Boston Globe.

During a presidential debate in 2012, Romney cited “whole binders full of women” his staff obtained from women’s groups when Romney was governor of Massachusetts in order to fill his state cabinet. His comment went viral, inspiring Halloween costumes, memes, a Tumblr blog and its own Wikipedia article.

On Tuesday, the Boston Globe reported that it had obtained the files — which were indeed literal three-ring binders full of cover letters and résumés — by way of an unnamed former Romney aide.

The binders weighed in “at an aggregate 15 pounds, 6 ounces,” according to the Globe.

At the time, Romney’s remark came across as patronizing, a reflection of his awkward and detached public persona at its most visible.

In March 2017, binders might have been viewed as welcome progress when Vice President Mike Pence met with a room full of men to discuss health care legislation that would have disproportionately affected women’s coverage if it hadn’t imploded days later.

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