The L.A. Times:
That moment of public humiliation stayed with people -- men and women, Democrats and Republicans. At a beauty salon in Brooklyn Heights, at the Mellow Mushroom pizzeria in midtown Atlanta, at a Denver office building, at a bar in the Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, the same questions came up:The New York Times:
How could she?
Why did she?
Haven't we seen this play one too many times?
Why do we go through this ritual of public shame and repentance, with the political wife standing mutely before the TV cameras as her husband admits his sexual indiscretion?
"I find it nauseating . . . phony and awful," said Leah Schanzer, 38, a doctoral student who stopped for coffee at a Starbucks in New York City. She gave an exaggerated shudder.
"It makes it seem like she's Susie Homemaker," said her friend Leslie Heller, 47. "She shouldn't be standing there, next to him."
Silda Wall Spitzer gave up a high-powered career as a corporate lawyer to raise three daughters and support her husband as he sought elective office, yet has always had deep reservations about his political career. Time and again, she has found herself in the particular bind of encouraging him during critical junctures in his public life while still holding on to some regret that he had chosen to put himself — and their family — there in the first place....The Washington Post:
According to friends, the governor’s time in Albany exacted a psychic cost from Ms. Wall Spitzer, 50, who has not been able to fully embrace her role as first lady. “I think the whole period of his governorship hasn’t fit her,” one friend of both Spitzers said. “It strained the marriage.
When Silda Wall Spitzer stood beside her husband in ashen-faced misery the other day as the governor made his brief apology in the prostitution scandal, she uttered not a word. Yet she launched a thousand conversations.Well, the Washington Post is most overt about it: To think about Silda is to think Hillary — to think about Hillary in a negative, damaging way.
"Why is she standing there?" many women wondered. "Should she be? Would I be?"
And for many, who've seen a long line of wronged political spouses do the same, from Hillary Rodham Clinton to Dina Matos McGreevey to Suzanne Craig, the immediate answer was a resounding, "Hell, no."
"I watched her and I thought, 'Again, the wife is standing there,'" said Jessica Thorpe, a 38-year-old mother of three in Larchmont, N.Y. "And I had a visceral reaction. I just don't get it. Why does it always have to be that way in politics? What will she get out of standing there?"
The blogosphere was buzzing, too, with the same questions. "Why do they show up?" asked blogger Amy Ephron on huffingtonpost.com. She proposed her own fantasy: "I just want one of them —Hillary, Silda — to stand on the steps of the White House, the governor's mansion, and stamp their foot and say, 'And another thing, I'm keeping the house.'"
Publishing an article that is designed to involve readers in the private decisionmaking and presumed suffering of this individual we've never paid attention to before is a way to drag us back into a slew of old questions about Hillary that we've thought about for years and probably dealt with one way or another by now. Here, let me pick that scab for you.
IN THE COMMENTS: Bissage writes:
Silda Wall Spitzer is highly intelligent, personable and ambitious.
She is also a master strategist.
This “stand by her man” moment is just one of many well thought-out steps she’s taken as she makes her way to her ultimate goal.
Soon enough . . . she’ll run for Governor.
After all, she has experience.