Attack of the Political Spouses

Matt Lewis
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Posted: Aug 17, 2007 8:58 AM
Political spouses have long been significant.  From Abigail Adams letter to her husband, asking him to, "Remember the ladies," to Hillary and Bill's "co-presidency," they have had an impact.  But this year, I have noticed a dramatic increase in the use of political spouses as surrogates. 

As I wrote a few weeks ago, I think Ann Romney is perhaps the perfect spouse.  Hillary has the advantage of a former president at her disposal (which doesn't hurt when it comes to raising money and inspiring the Democrat base).  And John Edwards has turned his wife Elizabeth into a Spiro Agnew-like attack dog.

And that has consequences, because once you introduce the idea of using spouses as political weapons, they become fair game for reporters (as Rudy has found out).

Most recently, Michelle Obama has started speaking out.  In this case, she adds a tougher dimension to her husband's "kinder, gentler" brand of campaigning.  No doubt, she's a polished public speaker (though I could do without the pointing).  Check this out ...