Al and Tipper Gore split; the enigma of political marriages
Who isn't shocked by the Al and Tipper Gore news? They looked so happy for so long. After years of unapologetic PDAs (who could forget that long, steamy kiss at the 2000 Democratic convention), they celebrated their 40th anniversary last month.
And announced their separation two weeks later.
Politics can take a toll on the best of marriages, but some splits still catch us by surprise. Virginia gubernatorial candidate Creigh Deeds and his wife of almost 20 years, Pam, looked like a perfect political team last fall, but they divorced in February. Karl Rove quietly divorced Darby in December after 24 years of marriage. And is there anything left to say about John and Elizabeth Edwards? That maybe it was profoundly weird to renew their wedding vows in 2007 (on their 30th anniversary) when he was running for president and his mistress was pregnant? But we didn't know that back then, so it looked sweet and romantic.
Lesson? Long-lasting political marriages are enigmatic, even the ones that look rock solid. Some couples are famously devoted, like Ronald and Nancy Reagan (married 52 years), Joe and Jill Biden (wed 32 years), and Colin and Alma Powell (47 years).
Other power couples don't fuss over each other in public but clearly make it work: Nancy and Paul Pelosi (47 years), and George and Laura Bush (32 years).
And, despite all the bets against them, there are the marriages that survive despite infidelity, distance and juicy rumors: Bill and Hillary Clinton (34 years), John and Cindy McCain (30 years), and Eliot and Silda Spitzer (22 years).
In other words, you can't tell a thing by a wedding ring -- especially in politics.
The Reliable Source
June 2, 2010; 1:05 AM ET
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