I feel a delicious schadenfreude at the consternation among some in the Republican party these days that is being caused by the wives of presidential candidate Rudy Giuliani and likely candidate Fred Thompson, the mediocre actor and undistinguished former senator who is contemplating a run himself.
Frederick of Hollywood and Rudy both have younger, ambitious wives who have alienated the professionals working on their respective campaigns, causing defections, firings and resignations in both camps.
In fact, both The Times (here) and The Washington Post (here) ran features Sunday about the wives, the trouble they've caused in the campaigns and the rumblings among the campaign workers. The candidates are beginning to realize that their ol' ball and chains are causing some trouble and are trying to head it off with these soft, humanizing interviews.
The fun is watching the right-wingers – who spent much of the 90s demonizing Hillary Clinton as a woman who "didn't know her place" – being hoisted on their own petard and now scrambling desperately to defend the Machiavellian schemings of Judi Nathan (Rudy's prize) and Jeri Thompson.
Nathan, especially, seems like a nightmare. She demands a separate seat for her Louis Vuitton bag on campaign airplanes (she calls it Little Louis! I wonder what she's calls Rudy's...er, well, never mind), she demanded a first-class ticket be bought for her by clients as she wanted to accompany him everywhere when he was out earning millions on the backs of the 9-11 dead giving high-priced speeches, and, of course, she famously pursued him when he was still the married mayor of NYC. That lead to him finally announcing the end of his marriage during a televised press conference, the first time his then wife, Donna Hanover, heard he wanted a divorce. Very classy. Judi is also apparently the main cause behind the alienation of Rudy's two teenage kids, both of whom have said they won't campaign for their father and barely talk to him now.
And of course, let's not even get into the underlying fact that the holier-than-thou “family values” party apparently has no problem with Rudy being on wife #3 and Fred on wife #2. Not to mention, Jeri looks like she works the pole (as former Republican congressman and now MSNBC host Joe Scarborough said, a not-so-veiled reference to her somewhat slutty outfits and an obvious boob job.)
Hypocrisy in the GOP?
Say it ain't so.
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