In this photo released by "The Ellen DeGeneres Show," Senator Barack Obama dances
with Ellen DeGeneres (AP).

Politicians Cross the Line from Candidates to Celebrities

May 09, 2008 09:00 AM
by findingDulcinea Staff
by Rachel Balik
The 2008 presidential candidates have willingly appeared on the pages of gossip magazines and talk shows.

30-Second Summary

Today’s presidential candidates have agreed to appear on the pages of gossip and celebrity magazines and TV shows; in many cases, they are more forthcoming with information and interviews when the reporter is from the entertainment media. According to The New York Times, “the gossip-magazine editors appear to hold the cards most of the time.”

Candidate Barack Obama grabbed attention when he danced on “The Ellen DeGeneres Show,” and has made himself available for magazine interviews. He walks the line between accessible and dignified; when Us Weekly asked whether he wears boxers or briefs, he answered, “I don’t answer those humiliating questions. But whichever one it is, I look good in ’em!”

Hillary Clinton also discussed her wardrobe choices with Us Weekly, agreeing to comment on her most embarrassing outfits for a two-page spread in the magazine.

The role of politician as celebrity dates back as least as far as John F. Kennedy.

Headline Links: ‘Politics? That’s hot.’

Background: Candidates as Celebrities

Historical context: The president behind the precedent


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