Season Four of Veep has begun and the world watches with baited breath as Selina Meyer (Julia Louis Dreyfus) takes over the free world in her role as President of the United States in the hit comedy. At the same time, Senator Hillary Clinton is also gearing up to blaze her own campaign trail. Mindfood talks to Julia for some political insight into the world of women and politics.
Do you think Senator Clinton should ask Selina Meyer to be her running mate?
Selina would be probably willing to accept but I think Hillary would be wise not to offer it
Why is that?
I think Selina Meyer is possibly not the best leader for the citizens of the United States.
Would it be safe to say that you view the world of politics through a different lens since being on the show?
It’s a different lens through which I sort of observe politics and politicians for sure, because I have to. I need to bring that to my work. I’m also keenly aware of what a difficult process it is for the people who are running, who are serving in government, it’s not easy. And you know, of course the show’s a comedy but I have the utmost respect for people who dedicate their lives in the service of others which is essentially of course what they’re doing.
How do people in politics respond to you? What do they say about the show?
They respond very favourably. I had people in the Vice President’s office coming up to me and saying, ‘I’m the Dan Egan of this office,’ or ‘I’m the Amy Brookheimer of this office,’ introducing themselves to me as characters on the show which I found really remarkable.
Should there be more women in politics?
Yes. If there were more women in politics the world would be a better and more peaceful and equitable place.
There are exceptions to this rule no doubt about it, but I think women have the better shot at leading in a more just and equitable manner. That’s been my experience anyway. But I have nothing against men. I love men. I married a man, I have men as children so I’m not male bashing but I do like ladies too.
Who’s your biggest fan?
Vice President Joe Biden is one of my biggest fans
The President is probably the ultimate multi-tasker. In an abstract way, how would it compare to being a working mother? In both positions you’re supposed to be fair and balanced.
Yeah, exactly. A woman I spoke to recently had just given birth to twins and she said, ‘Do you have any advice?’ I said, ‘Yes. Be kind to yourself and understand that you’re going to screw up and that’s completely okay.’ I think that as women particularly, and working women who have children at the same time and are trying to do it all at once, often feel somewhat up against it because there’s this sense that you’ve got to get it all done; you’ve got to get an A plus all the time and do it perfectly. But no, you’re going to screw up, and it’s okay. You’re human and just do the best you possibly can. And by the way, Selina Meyer is a horrific mother; she couldn’t have a more dysfunctional relationship with her daughter, and she has a highly dysfunctional relationship with her staff so she’s a complete mess in a lot of ways. Although this season as president she does accomplish a number of things, you’ll see.