The GOP Contenders' Wives

  • There are so many Republicans pursuing the presidential nominations that it’s sometimes hard to keep track of them, let alone their spouses. So here’s a look at the women who want their man in the White House:

    Gloria Cain

    Husband: Herman Cain

    Age: 65

    Education: Graduated from Morris Brown College, Class of 1967

    How they met: In college.

    Children: Melanie and Vincent

    What you might know about her: Hardly anything

    What you might not know about her: Everything

    What her husband says about her: Don’t expect to see her on the campaign trail. “My wife is one of the most unassuming, not-looking-for-the-limelight-people you’ve ever met,” Cain told an interviewer a few months ago. “And I’m going to keep it that way. I’m not going to push her out there to try to do things she doesn’t want to do. That’s not her personality.”
  • Callista Gingrich Wife of Newt Gingrich.
    Age: 45.

    Children: None

    Education: Luther College

    How they met: She was a congressional aide and he was a congressman

    What you might know about her: She and Gingrich, who adheres to a family-values platform, began having an affair in 1993, while he was still married to his second wife. Gingrich married Callista in 2000 after she converted him to Catholicism.

    What You Might Not Know About Her: Plays French horn in the City of Fairfax Band in Fairfax, Virginia.

    What her husband says about her: Gingrich says that his wife, who sings in the choir of the National Basilica of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, D.C., led him to convert to Catholicism.
  • Mary Kaye Huntsman Wife of former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman

    Age: 50

    Children: Mary, Abigail, Elizabeth, Jon, William, Gracie, Mei, Asha Bharati

    Education: University of Utah, Arizona State University

    How they met: The couple got together while both were working in a pie shop in Salt Lake City

    What you might know about her: As Utah’s First Lady, she worked to raise awareness about domestic violence and women’s health.

    What you might not know about her: She worked as a dental assistant while in college.

    What her husband says about her: Huntsman calls Mary Kaye “the finest human being I’ve known” and says she’s his “secret weapon.”
  • Carol Paul Wife of Texas Rep. Ron Paul
    Age: 76
    Children: Ronald “Ronnie” Jr., Lori, Rand, Robert, Joy

    Education: Dormont High School, Pittsburgh

    How they met: In high school

    What you might know about her: She’s the wife of a U.S. Representative and the mother of a U.S. Senator (Rand Paul, R-Kentucky.)

    What you might not know about her: Helped finance her husband’s medical-school education by running a baton-twirling school in their basement.
  • Anita Thigpen Perry Wife of Texas Gov. Rick Perry

    Age: 59

    Children: Griffin and Sydney

    Education: University of Texas at San Antonio Health Sciences Center

    How they met: At a piano recital

    What you might know about her: A nurse, Anita Perry she reportedly influenced her husband to implement a mandatory statewide vaccination program that would protect girls from HPV, the virus that causes cervical cancer. The program was a source of controversy for Perry because it was mandatory. What you might not about her: Texas Tech renamed its nursing school in her honor.

    What he says about her: Perry says Anita urged him to run for President, convincing him that he needed to do “your duty” for the country
  • Ann Romney Wife of former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney

    Age: 62

    Children: Tagg, Matt, Josh, Ben, Craig

    Education: Brigham Young University, Harvard University

    How they met: In high school in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan

    What you might know about her: She was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in 1998; the condition is currently under control.

    What you might not know about her: She is in favor of stem cell research – a controversial issue in conservative circles.

    What he says about her: Romney has said that if his wife’s illness flared up again, “I wouldn’t be involved in politics anymore. That would be over.”
  • Karen Santorum Wife of Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum

    Age: 53

    Children: Elizabeth, Richard, Daniel, Sarah, Peter, Patrick, Isabella, Gabriel

    How they met: When he was trying to recruit interns for his law firm

    What you might know about her: When the couple’s son Gabriel died two hours after she gave birth, Karen Santorum wrote “Letters To Gabriel,” talking about how much she loved him.

    What you might not know about her: She is both an attorney and a nurse

    What he says about her: Now a devout Catholic, Santorum has said his wife was the religious one in the beginning of their relationship, “carrying the big stick when it came to faith.”