Women in the White House: You decide

If you’re outside the United
States — or living in a news vacuum — you might have missed that today
is Iowa caucus day. That means that Iowa Republicans will be casting
ballots, Iowa Democrats will be standing in different
parts of a room

and, by the end of the day, we’ll be that much closer to knowing who
the next woman in the White House will be. This year is exciting because
we usually don’t get to vote for the woman in the White House.

The closest we’ve gotten so
far is Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, who’s two heartbeats away from the Presidency. Of course, as
Sarah pointed out last summer, we do have celluloid depictions of women who rule. And we all know that fictional leaders
are often more appealing than the real deal. (President Bartlett, anyone?)

So, let’s see how the real
prospects stand up against the fictional. In true Iowa-caucus fashion,
pick a candidate, stand in her corner and see if you can convince others
to join you.

Madame President

1. Senator Hillary
Rodham Clinton

Why you should stand in her
corner: She’s the first female Presidential candidate to have an actual
chance of winning. At the Visible Vote forum, she told us, “I’m your girl.” She supports the repeal of “Don’t
Ask, Don’t Tell” and is in favor of civil unions. She is a real-life
person.

Why you should stand elsewhere:
She doesn’t support same-sex marriage “yet.” Lots of people hate
her, and some believe that makes her unelectable.

2. President Julia Mansfield
(Patty Duke),
Hail to the
Chief

(1985)

Why you should stand in her
corner: She was groundbreaking as the first female President on TV.
The show was written by the creators of Soap, so she probably had some great lines.

Why you should not vote for her:
The show was canceled after seven episodes, which suggests that she
was not compelling — or perhaps the country just wasn’t ready for her.
She’s not a real person.

3. President Mackenzie Allen
(
Geena Davis),
Commander in Chief (2005)

Why you should stand in her
corner: I never saw the show, so I don’t really know. But according
to Sarah, “Mac” was brilliant. And Geena
Davis is really tall, and being tall might make people feel that a woman
is really in control.

Why you should stand elsewhere:
Again, I never saw the show, so my best argument is that it didn’t last
very long. As she was not a real person.

4. President Allison Taylor
(
Cherry Jones),
24 (2008)

Why you should stand in her
corner: Well, I don’t know what type of President she’ll be on 24,
but she’s Cherry Jones!

Why you should stand elsewhere:
I cannot think of a reason. She’s Cherry Jones!

First Lady

Technically, we don’t vote
for First Lady. But we all know she’s part of the picture. And this
is my caucus, so I get to pick who runs.

1.
Elizabeth Edwards

Why you should stand in her
corner: She’s cool. She supports same-sex
marriage
. She’s
valiantly fought all sorts of cancer. She’s not skinny, and that’s refreshing.

Why you should stand elsewhere:
Her husband’s a dweeb when it comes to same-sex marriage.

2.
Michelle Obama

Why you should stand in her corner: She’s brilliant, and you know she’d be a West Wing First Lady.

Why you should stand elsewhere: Her husband got a little testy when his stance on LGBT issues was
challenged at the Visible Vote forum.

3.
Dr. Abby Bartlett (
Stockard Channing),

The West Wing (1999–2006)

Why you should stand in her
corner: I didn’t actually watch much West Wing, but I believe with
all my heart that any First Lady played by Stockard Channing had to
be the Best. First. Lady. Ever.

Why you should stand elsewhere:
No reason that I can think of.

4.
Jeri Thompson

Why you should stand in her
corner: I dunno … it could be a refreshing change of pace to have a
trophy wife in the White House, I suppose.

Why you should stand elsewhere:
Because that would mean that Fred Thompson was president. And you cannot
be a character
on Roseanne

and be President.

5.
Ann Romney

Why you should stand in her
corner: She gave money to Planned
Parenthood
in 1994.
She’s a rare potential Republican First Lady who’s a first wife.

Why you should stand elsewhere:
She claims not to remember giving money to Planned Parenthood in 1994.

6.
Sherry Palmer (Penny Johnson) 24
(2001–2002)

Why you should stand in her
corner: She was a woman who could get things done — even if they were
illegal or unethical or driven by a need for vengeance.

Why you should stand elsewhere:
She was evil. And she died.

I know I’ve left a few folks
out but again — my caucus, my candidates. In the Presidential race,
I think I have to go with Hillary Clinton. When it comes down to it,
I like her, respect her most of the time and ultimately am not going
to choose a fake woman President when I can choose a real one. Although
Cherry Jones is tempting. And on the First Lady front, I’m going with
Dr. Abby Bartlett. Because she’s Stockard Channing.

The floor is open to you now.
Who would you choose?

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