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Ann Romney to critics: "Stop it. This is hard"

(CBS News) Amid ongoing criticism over the management of her husband's presidential campaign, Ann Romney on Thursday responded to the critics in an interview on Radio Iowa: "Stop it. This is hard. You want to try it? Get in the ring," she said.

"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," Romney said.

Even as conservative detractors escalate their critiques of how Mitt Romney has operated his bid for the presidency -- conservative journalist Peggy Noonan on Thursday called it a "rolling calamity" -- Ann Romney dismissed the negative appraisals.

"It's nonsense and the chattering hear it and then you just let it go right by," she said. "Honestly, at this point, I'm not surprised by anything."

Amid recent controversies over Romney's response to violence in Libya and comments he made about 47 percent of Americans thinking of themselves as "victims," the Republican presidential nominee has seen an apparent slip in both national and battleground polls.

Ann Romney said Thursday that amid the onslaught of unsolicited advice that has resulted, she opts to offer "peace and calm" to her husband.

"We call the rope line now the advice line," she said. "...because everyone cares and everyone wants to help and everyone wants to just give their peace -- a little piece of advice -- so I feel like my best advice is just to bring peace and calm to him and just trust in him and just say, 'I know you can do it,' but not to give him any advice because it gets too overwhelming."

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