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Relationship With Offspring

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The Obamas, January 3, 2008.  

Obama: Fraught With Guilt, But Otherwise Terrific
Obama has two daughters, Malia, 9, and Sasha, 6; he has lamented the lack of time he's able to spend with them since becoming a U.S. senator. “I may tell myself that in some larger sense I’m in politics for Malia and Sasha, that the work I do will make the world a better place for them,” he writes in The Audacity of Hope, but his “recent success does little to assuage the guilt” of missing out on his kids’ lives. Things have only gotten more hectic during the presidential campaign: Now the girls are lucky if they see their father more than once a week. (He alluded to this in the victory speech he gave after winning the South Carolina primary.) They tagged along on the campaign trail this past summer, but with school back in session, the Obamas have avoided disrupting their kids’ lives. (Fun fact: Sasha refers to her Secret Service detail as the “secret people.”)

McCain: Here’s a Story, of a Man Called McCain
In his first marriage, John had a biological daughter named Sidney and adopted his wife's two sons, Doug and Andy. His children were upset when John married Cindy Hensley only one month after divorcing their mother, but have since reconciled with him. Cindy and John had Meghan, Doug, Jack, and Jimmy, and adopted daughter Bridget from Bangladesh. Doug, Jack, and Jimmy upheld the McCain family tradition of military service. Meghan, 23, works for her father’s campaign. She contributes to McCainBlogette, which follows life on the campaign trail, with a heavy emphasis on shoes. Meghan has been referred to as a stealth asset for McCain’s campaign, but she has sometimes has a bit of trouble staying on message. She told MTV News in January, “I know he’s not as sexy as Obama and interesting and young and fresh. But I definitely still think he has an appeal.” What an endorsement! Bridget aside, John leaves his family out of his political career: “I just feel it’s inappropriate for us to mention our children. I’d like them to have their own lives,” he told the Times in December 2007.


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