Thursday on the Today show, Meredith Vieira asked special correspondent Jenna Bush if she had any words of advice for Chelsea Clinton. “I just want her to enjoy every minute,” Bush said. “She’s lovely and I know she’ll make a beautiful bride.” They should have asked Jenna’s advice earlier — she could have shared an even more important insight: Don’t be outrageously coy about your wedding; it will only draw more attention.
A quick look on Nexis indicates that by the time it was two days before Jenna’s nuptials, there were 414 articles about the event in major news outlets and blogs. As of yesterday, there have been 486 about Chelsea’s wedding — nearly 20 percent more. Before the day of Jenna’s wedding, there was a mere one article about it in the Times, focusing on the fact that it wouldn’t be held at the White House (Bush was still in office then, remember? This was the daughter of a sitting president). By now, the Times has published four articles about Chelsea’s wedding, two about the secrecy of the whole affair, one about people being afraid to talk about it, and one, for good measure, about Clinton allies who are pissed they weren’t invited. (Hey — Obama didn’t mind!)
Is this because Chelsea is simply more famous than Jenna Bush? Her parents more enthralling and controversial? Nice try. Yes, America was hard on little Chelsea and her braces and her frizzy hair — but they were twice as hard on fake-I.D.-owning, drunken-falling Jenna and her twin sister, Barbara. (It should be noted, as Gail Collins said eloquently yesterday in a column about Chelsea’s wedding, that all three grew up to be accomplished, lovely women. Oh wait, that’s a fifth article!)