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Emmanuel Macron's marriage proves politics is different in France

Monday - 08/05/2017 12:48
Most US presidents have one spouse and stick with them

Here's the simple love story of 15 year-old boy meets much older drama teacher in high school and eventually falls in love. His parents can't keep them apart, so years later the mother of three eventually divorces her husband and marries her former student. They flourish and then he runs for president when he's 39 and she's 64. And he wins.

It's much sweeter as a love story when you tell it as part of the presidential campaign than say, when the boy is in high school and it could, depending on when the love blossoms, be the stuff of a criminal case in the US rather than a candidate's biography.

We don't exactly know, by the way, when Emanuel Macron's love blossomed with his wife Brigitte. Suffice it to say his parents told her to stay away until he was 18 and shipped him off to Paris. Now, years later, they're still together and he will become the next president of France after a run-off election with conservative Marine Le Pen Sunday.
Can you imagine a politician with a personal life like Macron succeeding in the US? Maybe or maybe not. In France, it's met with a shrug.

There are a few interesting elements to this story:

First is that the husband is much younger than the wife, reversing the stereotype about older men and younger women. What's more -- they've been committed many years.

Plenty of people have pointed out that the difference in age between Macron and his wife, Brigitte, is about the same as it is for US President Donald Trump and his third wife, Melania.

Although Donald Trump was never Melania's drama teacher.

 
Are we sexist for gawking at Macron's marriage?


Are we sexist for gawking at Macron's marriage?

There's also the disclaimer that they're French, and everything when it comes to the personal lives and relationships is different.

CNN had an interesting piece last month quoting all sorts of French people taking delight in the idea of a younger man and an older woman and shrugging off the idea that there should be a scandal of any kind. They shrug and move on.

Complicated love lives are nothing new for French presidents.

The current president, Francois Hollande, has four children by another politician and former presidential candidate, Segolene Royal. They split, however, and he took up with a French journalist until a tabloid caught him riding on a motor scooter to the apartment of a much younger woman in Paris.

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Source: CNN:

 Key: Emanuel Ma

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