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First Lady Firsts PDF Print E-mail
Written by Synovate   
16 Jul 2008

First Lady Firsts

Whether they want it or not, first ladies can get as much or even more attention than their powerful spouses. In fact, many first ladies are notable in their own right, having racked up some other interesting ‘firsts’. There’s Sri Lankan first lady Sirimavo Bandaranaike who became the world's first female prime minister in 1960, four years after her husband was assassinated. Hilary Clinton was the first US presidential spouse to have a postgraduate degree, occupy office space in the White House, and run for and win political office after her husband’s term ended. And let’s not forget beauty Carla Bruni-Sarkozy, wife of France’s current president Nicolas Sarkozy, the first to pose ‘nudeish’ and also record her own music album.

But who is considered the ‘best’ first lady? In the US at least, it appears that Jackie still rules the roost. In a recent study for US News & World Report, nearly 36 percent of those polled felt that Jacqueline Kennedy was a model first lady, one that the next presidential wife should follow. Eleanor Roosevelt came in at 28.4 percent, Laura Bush at 20.8 percent, and Hilary Clinton at just 15 percent. When asked which upcoming US presidential wife would be the better first lady, the nation was almost evenly split, with 50.8 percent choosing Cindy McCain and 49.2 percent choosing Michelle Obama. With Obama’s fashion sense already being compared to Jackie’s, the race is on.

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