The Hillaryification Of First Ladydom

Matt Cooper writes:

The Hillaryifcation of First Ladydom continues. Teresa Heinz Kerry took her hits in 2004. Once the floodgates are open and a first lady is no longer seen as removed from politics, no one is safe. Thus the right already pillories Michelle Obama.

Granted, Mrs. Obama's ham-handed line about being very, very proud of her country for the first time in her adult life over the presidential bid of her husband struck many as off-putting. But the right making her into a latter-day Angela Davis has twisted that bit of spousal hyperenthusiasm. A cover story on Michelle in the National Review made her out to be a grievance monger. They've made much of her senior thesis at Princeton, where she wrote with great pain about feeling alienated on a campus surrounded by white privilege. Hmmm, you're 21, the daughter of a Chicago water-works man, who, in a great American success story, produced two Princeton kids who went on to remarkable careers (Michelle's brother is the coach of the Brown University basketball team.) You get to Princeton and somehow amidst the eating clubs like Tiger and Ivy and the like, you don't feel totally at home. I'm shocked.

The left hasn't pilloried Cindy McCain in the same way, but there's a lot of whispering. She's plastic. She's a crazy heiress--and worse. But here is what we know: She's worked her tail off to help poor kids around the world, adopting one herself. She came back from a prescription-drug addiction and a stroke that sapped her faculties of speech. She's by all accounts a devoted mother to her own kids, those from McCain's previous marriage.

In a world where the spouse is fair game, the spouse becomes an object of vilification, unhinged from any reality. None of this is meant to deify the woman who will be first lady, but they're points worth considering on their own.