A tale of two first ladies

The Washington Post reports rather cheekily that Ann LePage, the wife of the Republican governor of Maine, has used family connections to secure a job.  She is waiting tables during Maine’s tourist-rich summer on the coast at an establishment where her daughter previously worked!  Her husband’s salary is only $70,000, the lowest of any state chief executive in the country.  Maine’s first lady is hoping to buy a car.

Quite a contrast to another first lady some time back, whose governor husband’s salary in Arkansas was also low by national standards.  First Lady of Arkansas Hillary Clinton invested $1,000 in cattle futures, which turned into $6,300 overnight and nearly $100K over ten months.  When that raised some eyebrows (among non-Democrats, of course!), the claim was that she “read the Wall Street Journal to research her trades,” although it was finally admitted that she was given “advice” by some politically connected individuals.  Another administration official explained why, after making nearly one hundred times her money with a risk of only one thousand dollars, Hillary Clinton never again tried such investment: “[s]he couldn't stomach it anymore[.] … It was too nerve-racking.”  That does not seem to qualify as the temperament required of the commander-in-chief!

Also during her tenure as first lady of Arkansas, Hillary Clinton was appointed to the Board of Directors of Walmart, then based in Arkansas, where, the Washington Times reports:

Mrs. Clinton held the director position from 1986 to 1992, earning $18,000 a year with a bonus of $1,500 for each quarterly board meeting she attended. During the time Mrs. Clinton amassed $100,000 in Wal-Mart stock.

If one were cynical, it might be asked what it was about her work at the time at the Rose law firm, where she was handling things like sewer permits, that made her an attractive recruit to the Walmart Board, apart from political connections.

Hillary Clinton often says that she understands the American middle class.  I don’t believe she has the slightest understanding of a truly independent American middle-class woman like Ann LePage!

Denis Keohane blogs at http://keohane.blogspot.com.

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