You can look at the two top contenders for the Republican presidential nomination all you want, but that only tells you half the story. For the other half, you have to look at their spouses. I prefer to make such an inquiry on a purely subjective basis. And my woman’s intuition tells me I’d prefer Melania Trump as our next first lady.
First, I am still smarting from the humiliation inflicted on our nation’s women by the way in which the European media gushed over the breathtaking beauty and elegance of French first lady Carla Bruni and Princess Letizia of Spain when they met in 2009, before making the inevitable comparison with our own Michelle Obama. First came the photo of the shapely derrières of Carla and Letizia as they climbed the steps of the Zarzuela Palace. This picture was maliciously photo shopped to include an unflattering photo of Michelle and her more than ample backside. Her lack of style and bearing and sense of position was brought out by the juxtaposition with the other two ladies. The photo went viral on the Internet with headings such as “Theirs and Ours.”
Though Michelle redeemed herself somewhat during the latter part of her tenure as First Lady, 2009 was a very bad fashion year for her. She embarrassed us in 2009 when she wore a J. Crew cardigan to meet the Queen, and a bizarre, sequined and misbuttoned cardigan to meet British First Lady Sarah Brown. She was equally inappropriate at a posthumous Medal of Honor ceremony in 2011 where she wore a tight, garishly flowered low-cut dress. And then there was the outrageous (and outrageously expensive) outfit she wore in 2012 to the Kids’ Choice Awards.
I could go on, but you get the point. I could get into the unseemly public displays of marital discord in the Obama White House over the years, but I’ve already touched upon it here.
We haven’t had a woman who brought glamour to the White House since Jackie Kennedy. Melania, a former fashion model with exquisite Slavic features and a charming East European accent, is easily star-quality and the equal of any European first lady. She is also accomplished, being fluent in English, French, German, Slovenian, and Serbian, as well as intelligent, as Barbara Walters discovered when she interviewed the Trumps.
Note how natural, harmonious, and unrehearsed are the interactions between the various members of the Trump family. After the Clintons and Obamas, this is a breath of fresh air.
To restore our national dignity, we need a glamorous woman in the White House. Someone with beauty, poise, and a fashion sense. And someone who shows unambiguously that she loves her husband and enjoys being with him, rather than arm-wrestling him and looking determined to win.
Heidi Cruz is undeniably intelligent and accomplished, but there is something in Heidi and her relationship with Ted that makes me uneasy. Maybe it’s how she decided as a child that she wanted to go to Harvard Business School.
Though they’ve been married since 2001, they’ve rarely lived together under the same roof. A year after their marriage Ted moved to Austin, Texas, where he was appointed Solicitor General, leaving Heidi behind in Washington, D.C. Heidi had a successful political career in Washington, working her way up in the Bush administration to a position in national security where she reported directly to Condoleezza Rice, so it’s not surprising that she was hesitant to give it up.
Nevertheless, her husband had chosen to move across the country and in 2005 she followed him to Austin. This did not work out well for her, and one evening she walked out of their house after dinner. He did not follow her. Maybe he had work to do. The Austin police found her sitting by the side of an expressway with her head in her hands, and deemed her to be a danger to herself.
Things started to look up for the Cruz’s when Heidi decided to move 160 miles away to Houston, where she went to work for Goldman Sachs. Thereafter, their marriage became one of mutual assistance and success.
Heidi brought Ted to dinners with prospective investors who enjoyed talking politics with him. She called on him to “help make the ask,” as she told an audience at Claremont McKenna in 2011. In this way, Ted helped Heidi to build a network of clients.
Then Ted decided to run for the Senate and needed money to do so. It was Heidi’s turn to help, and the Cruz’s were able to secure a one million dollar low-interest loan from Heidi’s employer, one which Ted regrettably failed to disclose at the time. Not to take away from Heidi’s skill as a banker, but in the nature of things it had to be clear to all that a Senator could help his wife with prospective clients even more than a Solicitor General. And so it probably came as a surprise to no one when, one week after Ted was elected to the Senate in 2012, Heidi was promoted to the managing director ranks at Goldman Sachs.
Today, Heidi is once again helping Ted. Taking a leave of absence from Goldman Sachs, she’s working on his campaign for the Republican presidential nomination, raising money. “Raising money was something that I was able to help do from the get-go,” she now says. “I think the main reason is just because I’m not afraid to ask for money.” Evidently, Heidi has learned how to “make the ask.”
Despite their long-distance relationship, Ted fathered two children upon Heidi, one born in 2008, the other in 2011. You can see them trotted out for political advertisements, where they often appear as bookends to their parents.
The girls live in Houston with their mother. Given Heidi’s hectic schedule at Goldman, the girls are parked with nannies. They are not always amenable to staging a staging a tender moment with their dad, but then Ted doesn’t seem to be very adept with little girls, telling one three-year old in no uncertain terms that her world was “on fire,” much to her dismay. In fact, there is something very weird about the entire Cruz family dynamic, as can be seen from this video where Ted is attempting to coach various members of his family through a campaign ad shoot.
So what would it be like to have Heidi as first lady? Do we know of another politically ambitious family where the couple doesn’t particularly get along except when they are advancing each other? The Washington Post has noted the similarities between the Cruz’s and the Clintons.
In the final analysis, when I ask myself whether a Hillary Clinton redux would address the international embarrassment of the Clintons and the Obamas, I’m bound to say “No.”
Notice to Readers: The American Spectator and Spectator World are marks used by independent publishing companies that are not affiliated in any way. If you are looking for The Spectator World please click on the following link: https://thespectator.com/world.