Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

'First Partner' Is Hokey, but 'First Lady' Is Obsolete

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

'First Partner' Is Hokey, but 'First Lady' Is Obsolete

Article excerpt

Don't call Jennifer Siebel Newsom California's first lady. The wife of Gov. Gavin Newsom wants to be known as the "first partner."

She debuted the term shortly after the November election, telling the Los Angeles Times that the term was more inclusive than the traditional title for a political wife. "I'm obviously a thought partner of his - and the main thought partner."

This was no post-election sop to feminists. On Friday, the new title got an official imprimatur when Mr. Newsom announced the establishment of the Office of the First Partner, which has staff and a mission.

I know, I rolled my eyes at first, too. But then I thought, for all the hokiness, First Partner Newsom's effort to reimagine the archaic role she now inhabits is both sincere and welcome. …

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