Day: November 4, 2012

Sleeping with the (political) enemy

There are two articles in the Times this week about cross-party marriage — this Modern Love column, and this piece by K.J. Dell’Antonia. Both women are married to men with opposite political views. It’s not obvious from either post who’s the Democrat and who’s the Republican in each relationship, but K.J. (of whom I am a huge fan) drops some hints that she’s probably the Obama supporter in her marriage. Both women conclude that what’s actually important in a marriage is love and mutual respect, and that while political differences are challenging, shared fundamental values are what matter most. And in an increasingly politically polarized country, it’s hard to write the other side off as stupid or heartless when “the other side” is sitting across the dinner table from you. Both women emphasize that they share end political goals with their husbands — expanding health care access, improving the economy — they just disagree about how to get there. Cross-party marriages, K.J. says, are good in part because they model bipartisanship and compromise, which are two virtues our country hungers for.