Point of view: A private moment in public politics

The scene was the ballroom of the Century Plaza Hotel in Los Angeles shortly after Gov. Gray Davis conceded the recall election to Arnold Schwarzenegger. Schwarzenegger had attracted not just the national but also the international press, so the room was packed. I had wormed my way to a spot in the front, a spot so tight that just raising my camera threatened other photographers' views, and vice-versa. We stood, cramped, for hours until the governor-elect finally arrived. Showing Solomonlike wisdom, the new governor used his first official act to praise his wife, Maria Shriver, for her help. Judging from her response, it was a good call - and an opportunity for photographers to show another side of the story. Obviously, the film star was a deft navigator of a bipartisan marriage. He has since shown himself equally adept at steering through a gridlock-prone legislature. Former Speaker of the House Tip O'Neill once said, "All politics is local." Schwarzenegger might demur: "All politics is domestic."

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