The wives of Presidents

The book “Watergate: A Novel” brings up an interesting point that we see with presidents and their wives. In the book Pat Nixon, the First Lady to Richard Nixon, has an affair with another man and instead of leaving President Nixon to have a better relationship with someone, she stays with him because it is her “duty” as First Lady to be beside her husband, even though President Nixon was proven to be a paranoid psychopath

With the passing of Nancy Reagan this week, we can see how much she truly loved her husband, President Ronald Reagan. But that is not always the case with Presidents and their wives. We’ve heard in the past the rumors of current President Barack Obama and Michelle Obama having problems in their relationship. But the First Lady can’t just leave their husband because it would make the most powerful man in the country look bad. And then their is the proven affair of Bill Clinton and Monica Lewinsky, even though Hillary Clinton knows about the affair she still remains with him today and has him by her side while she is running for President at this time. This tells us that being the First Lady can be a tough job if you don’t love the man that runs the country any more and the only time the First Lady can leave the President is the day they die.

4 thoughts on “The wives of Presidents”

  1. I think your on to something here. It truly is an interesting observation. I think this is apparent in the novel as well by how much power have in the book. I found it interesting how the wives of the thieves were really concerned for their husbands’ well-being. Often times they were the ones that were nudging the presidents office to help them in return for silence and cooperation. While reading your post I thought about the show House of Cards. In the series, the presidents wife, Claire Underwood, is the strong one in the relationship. Many times throughout the series you see instances where Claire is the one calling the shots and making plans in order for her husband to succeed and ultimately take the oval office. I don’t want to ruin the ending for those whom haven’t seen it, but up until the very end, we see that the protagonist is not in fact Claire’s husband, but Claire herself, such that I felt she would have made a much better president than her husband.

  2. I agree with your statement about a first lady’s job. In the novel, Pat Nixon could not leave her husband, so instead she had an affair. Most of the times, it is the man who has the affair, and the wife stays with him like the case of Bill Clinton. Pat Nixon knew that she could not leave her husband at such a time of need, so instead she just cheated on him. I’m not saying what she did is right, but it is better than if she would have left him in such a time of need.

  3. There is such saying “Behind every great man there‚Äôs a great woman”. And that’s absolutely true, especially in the case of Presidents and their wives.
    You’ve made a great illustration for this saying by your post.

    A while ago there was a concept of social roles in the society, in family where a man was working hard making money and a woman was keeping their house and support him in any bad and good situation.

    And we see that in some cases it is still true.

    Alex Gaysenok

  4. I think this comparison between Hilary Clinton and Pat Nixon is a extremely intriguing. I agree with your idea that their individual decisions to stay with their Husbands, in both of respective situations, shows a level of commitment to the job and title of First Lady very seriously. I think First Lady’s are very often remembered for the programs they championed, like Laura Bush with education or Nancy Reagan’s anti-drug message, rather than being remembered for their intensive commitment to the role of First Lady.

    -Alex Murphy

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