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Sunday, August 12, 2007

2008: Is your candidate hot? Or not?

The weekend before last, the LA Times published Robin Abcarian's worthwhile analysis about sex appeal in the 2008 Presidential race.

My conclusion following critical analysis: Republican Presidential candidates depend on young (trophy?) wives to stay hot. Republicans like their first ladies to look like Hollywood models and are more likely to accept marriages with large age differences (we'll see if this is borne out in the primaries). Democrats are most likely to dig pretty candidates and are less comfortable sexualizing a first lady candidate. Dems also have trouble moving beyond their past candidates' transgressions and awkwardness. Read on before correcting me in the comments.

For the sake of argument, let's assume all of these three examples of Republican sexiness are intentional. Probably the case anyway -- these are presidential campaigns we're talking about.

  • Rudy Guliani posing with his third wife Judith Nathan Giuliani in Harper's Bazaar with intentional passion.
  • Cindy McCain, John McCain's first and only wife, giving a tour of the McCain home to FoxNews. Now that's way more than Clinton cleavage!

  • Fred Thompson's second wife, Jeri Kehn Thompson, unafraid to show off what's she's got.

Some Democratic candidates were mentioned for their young wives, as well. But no one with a real shot at the nomination, so I'm leaving them out of this analysis. I had no idea about Kucinich! An excerpt:

Sen. Christopher J. Dodd of Connecticut, a Democratic hopeful, is 18 years older than his wife, Jackie. The prize for greatest age gap, however, goes to Democratic contender Rep. Dennis J. Kucinich of Ohio, who is 31 years older than his 29-year-old wife, Elizabeth.

For the Democratic frontrunners, Abcarian couldn't muster much of anything that didn't involve Lewinsky for Hillary Clinton. Obama got his fair share of ink and was crowned, if not explicitly, the sexiest of the candidates. But John Edwards was not even mentioned! And he's probably the 'prettiest' of all the candidates, but for some reasons he was off limits for this story. Maybe it has something to do with the Elizabeth Edwards cancer factor? It goes to show that sex appeal doesn't immediately follow from good looks.

Abcarian unfortunately spent more time on past Democratic candidates sex appeal than current ones, like the Clinton Lewinsky scandal and Al Gore's major league smooch of Tipper as he accepted the Democratic nomination for president. If she wants to go there, it might have been worthwhile to include the current President and his first lady in this analysis. Thoughts?


  • Cindy is McCain's second wife and 17 years his junior. He married her a month after his divorce was finalized.

    By Anonymous xyppur, at Tue Feb 05, 11:42:00 PM PST  

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