The Dutiful Political Wife
Dear Silda Wall Spitzer,
So. Today was awkward, huh? Your husband of 20 years cheated on you with a prostitute. A high class prostitute, sure, but still someone he paid money to for sex. And for a woman like you, a Harvard trained lawyer who never wanted to be a political wife anyway, standing silently by while your husband sort of apologized for cheating must have taken everything you had. We want you to know, it's okay to be mad.
In this age when everyone, or at least half of everyone, is divorced, we accept that marriages are complex institutions that no one knows how to operate. We're used to political marriages falling apart. But what we're sick of is political wives pretending everything is okay.
Remember how Dina McGreevey seemed not to mind that her husband was a philanderer
fag Gay American [Sometimes things come out harsher than we meant! —ed] at the first press conference? That strategy didn't really work, because it turns out, she really did care quite a bit. And back in the Gennifer Flowers era, Hillary Clinton also did the stand-by-your man routine, and defended Bill on 60 Minutes. It was the first of many lies the Clintons would tell us about their marriage. Suzanne Thompson, Larry Craig's wife, is still playing make-believe, but we know the tell-all book will be out by the time Larry Craig leaves the Senate. The thing is, holding your husband's hand and embracing him after the press conference is sort of like popping a pimple. It might give off short term satisfaction, but ultimately, it will create a scar.
In our own way, we're sort of pissed at Eliot Spitzer, too. We thought he was better than the rest of New York politicians. Like, you, we may be able to forgive him over time. But for our sake, don't act like everything is all right, because between you and him, and the State of New York and him, it's just not.