Jeri Thompson isn’t running for president. Her husband Fred has not proclaimed her part of a co-presidency should he take the White House. Yet, Jeri Thompson has been the subject of some pretty nasty stuff.
‐ Joe Scarborough asked whether Jeri Thompson “worked the pole.”
‐ The New York Times asks: “Is America ready for a president with a trophy wife?” and “Will the so-called values voters accept this union?” They also dove into comment sections on websites to dredge up negative comments about her.
‐ Salon’s Glenn Greenwald highlights her “25 years younger than he” age, and says it is “manifestly inconsistent with the so-called “traditional marriage values.”
‐ Salon picks it up again.
‐ Susan Estrich writes a column arguing that people will like Fred Thompson less, and not vote for him, because he’s with “someone who wasn’t even alive when JFK was shot, or at least was too young to remember where she was” and someone who “doesn’t remember the songs and the history and the fears we grew up with…”
‐ Concord Monitor columnist assails Jeri Thompson for being attractive, and says Jeri Thompson has to be “Less tan, less blonde, less Victoria’s Secret. Less sex.” in order to be First Lady.
‐ ABCNews.com does a “some say…” piece about Jeri Thompson that begins with the words “Stripper.” “Bimbo.” “Permanently tan.”
‐ NY Post continues.
‐ Boston Herald titles story “GOP wives are a pol’s breast friend” and says Jeri “helps Fred with AARP, Viagra-ed up men: “You still got it goin’, Fred, you dirty dog.” (Alt: text here)
Where to begin? The ultimate exploiter of the “trophy” spouse would be Hillary Clinton. But for Bill Clinton, she would be a nobody. If Hillary was only a Rodham, she’d be just another Chicago liberal. She’s stood on Bill Clinton’s shoulders for three decades. In fact, she’s still relying on him to help deliver campaign contributions and the votes in early primary states like Iowa and New Hampshire. And that’s why she “stood by him” when he was accused of rape and other forms of criminal assault. It’s called power.
Susan Estrich is supposedly concerned that Jeri Thompson wasn’t old enough to appreciate the JFK murder. Barack Obama was still wetting his diapers on that horrible day in Dallas. Is he disqualified? And he’s actually running for president. And if age is the issue, Jeri Thompson is only a few years younger than JFK when he was elected president. And he wasn’t old enough to remember the most recent presidential assassination at the time — that of William McKinley.
And, of course, while these folks comment on Jeri Thompson’s physical appearance (sounds like jealousy), I suppose these critics should make known their own experiences with cosmetic surgery. Senator Biden, about hair plugs… Hillary has had her share of makeovers. You judge the results. John Edwards pays thousands to teams of specialists to get that part in his hair just right. And is it me, or does it look like Dennis Kucinich is wearing lifts in his shoes these days?
As for Joe Scarborough and his “work the pole” comment, he makes himself sound like the kind of guy who gets the frequent-tipper discount at most of these places. What MSNBC won’t do for ratings?
Notice, too, how the wives of Democrat candidates are given a complete makeover. Michelle Obama is said to a beautiful, intelligent, and a talented professional. Has anyone asked for her measurements? Of course not. But did you know that Jeri Thompson is more than a good-looking blond? Among other things, the former Jeri Kehn worked at Burson Marsteller as director of new business and as Republican consultant in the government-affairs shop at Verner Liipfert (now Piper Rudnick).
Hillary Clinton and the Democrat spouses are treated as accomplished women. No talk about tan lines, bust lines, or hair lines. The Left likes to lecture us about sexism and gender discrimination. But when it comes to Republican women, they’re all for a glass ceiling. The truth is that if Jeri Thompson was the wife of a leading liberal Democrat candidate, or spent her life working for liberal causes, they would fall all over her with adulation. They’d fawn over her good looks, grace, and charm. They’d praise her for balancing family and public life. The age difference between Fred Thompson (64) and Jeri Thompson (40) would go unmentioned — as it has with Chris Dodd and his young wife. And in the case of JFK, his marriage to the younger Jackie was said to be a huge asset. It unquestionably was.
The personal attacks on Jeri Thompson are meant to damage Fred Thompson’s undeclared presidential bid. They’re afraid of you, Fred! All the more reason to join the battle.
— Mark R. Levin is a nationally syndicated radio host.
Editor’s note: This has been corrected since its posting.