CLIVE, Iowa, Sept. 21 (UPI) -- Republicans who are criticizing Mitt Romney should "stop it" and realize "how lucky we are" he is the presidential nominee, Ann Romney told an Iowa interviewer.
Speaking Thursday on Radio Iowa -- a statewide radio news network -- Ann Romney was asked about criticism from high-profile Republicans and conservatives, who have called her husband out this week for his comments at a Florida fundraiser in May.
Mitt Romney was caught on a hidden camera saying 47 percent of Americans who don't pay income taxes "are dependent upon government, who believe that they are victims, who believe the government has a responsibility to care for them, who believe that they are entitled to healthcare, to food, to housing, to you-name-it -- that that's an entitlement -- and the government should give it to them. And they will vote for this president no matter what."
The nominee's critics have included several GOP nominees in U.S. Senate races.
"Stop it. This is hard. You want to try it? Get in the ring," Ann Romney said when asked about the criticism. "This is hard and, you know, it's an important thing that we're doing right now and it's an important election and it is time for all Americans to realize how significant this election is and how lucky we are to have someone with Mitt's qualifications and experience and know-how to be able to have the opportunity to run this country."
She had spoken earlier Thursday to about 200 people at a campaign rally in Iowa, where her husband was proclaimed winner of the Iowa Caucuses by 10 votes over former U.S. Sen. Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania, although the final result was unclear.
"Wow, back in Iowa. Here we are again," she said, to cheers and applause. "However, I don't want it to be a 10-vote margin again. I want to have a bigger win, so let's make sure in Iowa we win big in November."