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05 July 2006

An Affair To Remember

Homosexuals are not monogamous. They want to destroy the institution of marriage. It will destroy marriage. It will destroy the Earth.--James Dobson

Marriage has been in the news a lot in the past few years. I think it all started back when Bill Clinton got his infamous blowjob. These days, it seems that one of the biggest issues on the Republican agenda is the sanctity of marriage.

That's an interesting prospect for a couple of reasons. For one, Republicans are supposed to be the party of small government. Yet everywhere we turn, many Republicans seem to be wanting to tell people what they can or can't do in their bedrooms, who they can or can't marry, what words they can't hear on television and the radio, what can be taught in science classrooms, which religious documents can be placed in courtrooms, and so on. That seems like an awful lot of oversight for a group that wants smaller government.

Secondly, and what will surely provide The Daily Show with a lot of great material in the next couple of years, is how it relates to at least three potential 2008 Republican presidential candidates. Three of the top Republican candidates for 2008 are John McCain, Newt Gingrich and Rudy Giuliani. The problem? All three have cheated on their wives. And all three are divorced.

Notes Alternet:

McCain was still married and living with his wife in 1979 while, according to The New York Times' Nicholas Kristof, "aggressively courting a 25-year-old woman who was as beautiful as she was rich." McCain divorced his wife, who had raised their three children while he was imprisoned in Vietnam, then launched his political career with his new wife's family money. In 2000, McCain managed to deflect media questioning about his first marriage with a deft admission of responsibility for its failure. It's possible that the age of the offense and McCain's charmed relationship with the press will pull him through again, but Giuliani and Gingrich may face a more difficult challenge. Both conducted well-documented affairs in the last decade -- while still in public office.

Giuliani informed his second wife, Donna Hanover, of his intention to seek a separation in a 2000 press conference. The announcement was precipitated by a tabloid frenzy after Giuliani marched with his then-mistress, Judith Nathan, in New York's St. Patrick's Day parade, an acknowledgement of infidelity so audacious that Daily News columnist Jim Dwyer compared it with "groping in the window at Macy's." In the acrid divorce proceedings that followed, Hanover accused Giuliani of serial adultery, alleging that Nathan was just the latest in a string of mistresses, following an affair the mayor had had with his former communications director.

But the most notorious of them all is undoubtedly Gingrich, who ran for Congress in 1978 on the slogan, "Let Our Family Represent Your Family." (He was reportedly cheating on his first wife at the time). In 1995, an alleged mistress from that period, Anne Manning, told Vanity Fair's Gail Sheehy: "We had oral sex. He prefers that modus operandi because then he can say, 'I never slept with her.'" Gingrich obtained his first divorce in 1981, after forcing his wife, who had helped put him through graduate school, to haggle over the terms while in the hospital, as she recovered from uterine cancer surgery. In 1999, he was disgraced again, having been caught in an affair with a 33-year-old congressional aide while spearheading the impeachment proceedings against President Clinton.

Despite the scandalous details, whether the press will air them is still an open question. When it comes to personal morality, liberal commentators have long argued that the press has one standard for Democrats and another for Republicans (and another one entirely for the Clintons). It's possible that the mainstream media will fail to apply the same scrutiny to the known transgressions of Gingrich, Giuliani and McCain as the Times did to rumors about Hillary Clinton's husband.
That's going to pose a big problem for a lot of evangelical Christians. James Dobson, quoted above, has already distanced himself from McCain. And it's likely he won't have anything to do with Giuliani or Gingrich. That could prove troublesome for a Republican party that has increasingly relied on conservative evangelicals in the past few years.

Of course, this assumes that Christians are going to be consistent in their message of moral values, which I think is unlikely. It also assumes that Democrats are smart enough to use Republican hyprocrisy to their advantage. So far they haven't had the ovaries for that.

Comments on "An Affair To Remember"


Blogger ninjanun said ... (7/05/2006 04:49:00 PM) : 

I think the correct term is "they don't have the uterus for that," but whatevah. ;)

Your blog posts are always so good, I'm tempted to just re-post everything you say over on to my blog.


Blogger Jenny said ... (7/05/2006 07:08:00 PM) : 

So far they haven't had the ovaries for that.

<3 <3 <3

Of course, this assumes that Christians are going to be consistent in their message of moral values, which I think is unlikely.

Agreed. One reason that evangelical Christians attack homosexuality is because it's one "sin" that they are extremely unlikely to commit. Only 10% of people are gay (in theory) but 50% of marriages end in divorce.


Blogger Nicole said ... (7/05/2006 10:06:00 PM) : 

Your blog posts are always so good, I'm tempted to just re-post everything you say over on to my blog.

Here comes the big head. ;) But yes, I agree. Now, if only I can get him to share or write more of his creative stuff. I love it and miss it. (I used to get the best love letters.)


Blogger Wasp Jerky said ... (7/06/2006 08:15:00 AM) : 

Thanks ninja.

What's especially intriguing about the divorce and consistency angle is that supposedly James Dobson's son Ryan is divorced and remarried. I'm actually really surprised that no one has hired a private investigator to get to the bottom of that one.

Silly nicole, I traded in my letter writing for my mad love making skills.


Blogger jasdye said ... (7/06/2006 10:26:00 AM) : 

once again, my political cynicism is fed.

come armageddeon.


Blogger Dan Trabue said ... (7/07/2006 11:08:00 AM) : 

So, Dobson is worried that gays will "destroy the earth" but not worried about unsustainable living?

I suppose once your head is sufficiently full of shit, your vision is bound to go...


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