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Political scandal and The Politician’s Wife

posted by Nell Minow

Once again a politician is in disgrace and once again his wife appears at his side at the press conference. While he admits his mistakes, she stands there in silent support. What is she thinking? Of the sacrifices she made over the years, the time spent smiling, shaking hands, pretending to be interested, wishing she was alone with her family or pursuing her own interests? Of the humiliation of seeing her family’s most personal information dissected by pundits and cackled over by people who have never contributed to the public good?

An excellent BBC miniseries starring Juliet Stevenson explores what might be on the mind of one such woman. It is called, of course, “The Politician’s Wife.”

  • Christian Toto

    I always wished more people would focus on this issue, and the latest events in New York may make that happen. Hollywood should consider such a story.
    I also hoped more feminists would have spoken out against Hillary Clinton over the years for being a lousy role model for young, impressionable woman. Her husband clearly cheated for years and years, and rather than leave him or talk openly about her struggles within her marriage, she stood by her man and blasted his accusers. What kind of a message is that? And one’s take on this shouldn’t hinge on what party you identify with …

  • monkie

    I read an article on this subject this morning: “Women ponder why Spitzer’s wife stood by” at http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/spitzer_political_spouses;_ylt=AibMJb..AgYi5T9kuwYSIwNH2ocA . It does make me wonder what goes on behind the scenes… with the Clintons, I just assumed Hillary had her own political agenda, that standing by her man was more of a calculated career move. This time around, who knows? I’d like to think she’s trying to protect her children. Honestly, I don’t think it’s really any of our business, but we’re part of such a voyeuristic society (and really, isn’t that why we watch so many movies? LOL) that it’s nice to speculate on something other than the state of Britney Spears’ mental health. Anyway, I sincerely feel for the woman. It’s a horrible position to be in no matter how she handles it.

  • KJT

    I love Juliet Stevenson, so I’m going to search this one out. Thanks for the heads-up.
    This question has been on the mind of every single woman I’ve discussed the scandal with. Every single one says, “No way I’d do that.” So why does it seem like every single political wife does stand by her man?

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