Ben Stowe joined Naga Munchetty this morning to discuss the numerous press articles over the weekend focussing on political marriages and how rarely they thrive. The Telegraph’s Isobel Hardman claims she has never met anyone who said that being an MP improved their relationship and Sarah Vine, a journalist married to MP Michael Gove, identifies being treated as “feudal barons” and a culture of no one ever saying no to them making it difficult for anything to compete with the “adrenaline of power”.
Naga asked Ben to call on his expertise in acting for politicians to give his views on how much pressure there is on a relationship if you are married as an MP. Ben acknowledged the strains and pressures but countered that this “power grab” is not unique to MPs but can apply to a whole range of professional people with demanding jobs. However, Ben did agree with Naga’s question on the public scrutiny MPs have to face, appreciating that the level of scrutiny for MPs is different from most other professionals. Matt Hancock will not be the only person to have “a snog in the office”, he said, but unlike most couples, he and his wife do not have the opportunity to deal with the situation in private. MPs simply do not have that luxury.
You can listen to the full interview here – scroll to 10.52