Democratic power couples

By Laurie Bennett

January 20, 2013 at 12:32pm

When the POTUS and FLOTUS dance at the inaugural balls Monday, America will witness the ultimate in power couples.

Yet the Obamas won’t be the only super spouses in Washington this week.

We’ve compiled a list of influential duos in Democratic circles. While not everyone will be at the festivities, power does love power. So expect to see many of these faces.

The Obamas, in 2009
The Obamas, in 2009

Our list, after the Obamas and the Bidens, is in alphabetical order. A dollar sign ( bundler ) next to names indicates that one or both spouses acted as bundlers, raising money for the 2012 campaign.

Michelle and Barack Obama - Although Michelle Obama has repeatedly said she will not run for office, her performance at the Democratic Convention and stratospheric favorability ratings would indicate a continuing public role after 2016.

Hillary Rodham Clinton and Bill Clinton - Who knows what the future holds for Hillary and Chelsea? The Clintons could veg out in the TV room at Chappaqua for the next two decades and still be a power couple.

Jill and Joe Biden - The Bidens’ future clout may well depend on the decisions made by the retiring secretary of state. We’re already feeling guilty for all the dirty jobs the veep has handled for his boss.


Beyonce and Jay-Z - Don’t even try telling us that these super-stars don’t hold sway in the Democratic Party. The two hosted a fundraiser for Obama in September. Beyonce will sing the anthem at the inauguration.

bundler Crandall and Erskine Bowles - Although he’s been a bit of a thorn in Obama’s side since co-chairing the president’s fiscal commission, Erskine Bowles still wields significant clout. Crandall Bowles is a director of such companies as Deere and JPMorgan Chase.

Lael Brainard and Kurt Campbell - He’s assistant secretary of State. She’s undersecretary of the Treasury, a name frequently mentioned as a possible successor to Tim Geithner before Obama nominated Jake Lew.

bundler Paula Hannaway Crown and James Crown - Members of one of Chicago’s most prominent families, both have raised money for Obama campaigns.

Linda and Tom Daschle - National co-chair of Obama’s campaign in 2008, Tom Daschle was the new president’s choice for health and human services secretary. He withdrew because of his failure to pay back taxes. Linda Daschle, a former deputy administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration, runs a lobby firm that represents such clients as American Airlines and Lockheed Martin.

bundler Judith and Ronald Davenport Sr. - Both raised money for the 2012 campaign. He chairs Sheridan Broadcasting Corporation.

bundler Cheryl Cohen Effron and Blair Effron - He’s that rare breed - an investment banker who worked for the president’s re-election.

Dianne Feinstein
Dianne Feinstein

Dianne Feinstein and Richard Blum - She’s a U.S. senator and former mayor of San Francisco. He’s chairman of CBRE Group. Feinstein ranks as the ninth wealthiest member of Congress, worth more than $45 million.

bundler Jane Hartley and Ralph Schlosstein - Hartley, former chair and CEO of the G-7, raised money for both of Obama’s presidential campaigns. Schlosstein is president and CEO of Evercore Partners, an investment banking firm.

Chris Hughes and Sean Eldridge - Hughes, co-founder of Facebook and owner of the New Republic, married Eldridge in July. Hughes coordinated online organizing for the Obama campaign in 2008. Eldridge is a former political director of Freedom to Marry.

bundler Quinn Delaney and Wayne Jordan - Both have been Obama bundlers. Jordan is also a big contributor to Democratic PACs such as American Bridge 21st Century

Ann Dibble Jordan and Vernon Jordan Jr. - Esteemed elders of the party, the Jordans have racked up a seemingly impossible list of civic and corporate positions and achievements over the decades.

Teresa Heinz Kerry and John Kerry - One of the disappointments in John Kerry’s failure to win the presidency in 2004 was that America never got to experience Teresa Heinz Kerry as first lady. She heads the Heinz Endowments and Heinz Family Foundation. He’s awaiting Senate approval to become secretary of State.

bundler Judith-Ann Corrente and Willem Kooyker - Both raised money for the 2012 campaign. He’s founder of Blenheim Capital Management. She sits on the boards of such New York organizations as the Metropolitan Opera and the Central Park Conservancy.

bundler Mattie and Michael Lawson - Repeat bundlers for the president. He’s a former partner of Skadden, Arps.

Spike Lee
Spike Lee

bundler Tonya Lewis Lee and Spike Lee - Attorney Tonya Lewis Lee and her filmmaker husband both raised money for Obama’s re-election.

bundler Elizabeth Alter and Michael Lynton - Repeat bundlers. Her parents raised money for Obama’s Senate campaign in 2004. Her brother is Jonathan Alter, author and political pundit. Lynton heads Sony Pictures Entertainment.

Nancy and Paul Pelosi - She’s itching to get the gavel back. He’s building the family fortune as owner of a California real estate company and the Sacramento Mountain Lions.

Alma and Colin Powell - While Powell is a Republican, his endorsement of Obama in 2008 and 2012 ensure a warm welcome at any Democratic function. Or campaign, for that matter.

bundler Penny S. Pritzker and Bryan Traubert - She was Obama’s national finance chair in 2008. As the New York Times observed last July: “Without Penny Pritzker, it is unlikely that Barack Obama ever would have been elected to the United States Senate or the presidency.”

bundler Judith Zarin and Gerald Rosenfeld - Another bundling duo. He’s vice chairman at Lazard.

bundler Beth Kobliner Shaw and David Shaw - Both are bundlers. He’s a billionaire hedge funder. She’s a member of the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology.

Chellie Pingree and S. Donald Sussman - She’s a Democratic congresswoman from Maine. He’s yet another billionaire hedge funder.

Follow Muckety on Twitter Tweet This! Share on Facebook

Click here to sign up for the Muckety Newsletter

 Read related stories: Families · Lists · Politics · Recent Stories  


  • There are no comments yet, be the first by filling in the form below.

Leave a Comment

The relationship map to the left is interactive.
• Solid lines are current relations. Dotted lines are former relations.
• Expand items with + signs by double-clicking or by selecting multiple items in the map and pressing the "e" key.
• Move an item in the map by clicking and dragging.
• You can also delete items, separate boxes and save maps. Right-click on the map or select Map Tools for these options.
• Find out more about an item in the map by right-clicking on the item and choosing Information about...
• View map color key.
• This interactive map requires Flash player.

Become a fan of Muckety on Facebook

  • Search for stories
    Special Features

Follow Muckety on Twitter Follow Muckety on Twitter
Muckety has no direct connection to most of the people or organizations listed on these pages.
We are unable to forward personal messages or provide personal contact information.
We make every effort at Muckety to ensure that our data is correct and timely. However, relationships are in constant flux and we cannot guarantee accuracy. If you come across incorrect or outdated information, please let us know by email.
© 2017 Muckety LLC