“Oh god its mum,” a national televised political debate between brothers hijacked by their mother on Wednesday Photo: C-SPAN The Woodhouse brothers where appearing on the Washington Journal when their mother, Joy, called in Photo: C-SPAN
How far would you go for a harmonious family Christmas?
The Woodhouses have set the bar pretty high in the week before households sit down to hams around the world.
There must be tension around the family’s dinner table, but few would have expected it flare up on national television through a phone call from the family’s matriarch.
During a televised political debate in the United States on Wednesday, Brad and Dallas Woodhouse got exactly that when their mother, Joy Woodhouse, called into cable public service network, C-SPAN, to beg them to stop their political bickering before the turkey gets cold this festive season.
The pleas from Mrs Woodhouse came after what must have been an awkward Thanksgiving for the whole family, when the brothers spent time apart due to political differences.
On one side of the argument sits the fiercely progressive Democrat lobbyist and former Democrat communications director, Brad Woodhouse, champion of all things Barack Obama.
On the other, his younger brother Dallas, a Republican policy advisor who has tried to run Obamacare out of North Carolina, the topic the two brothers were debating when a call from a random viewer came in.
As Joy Woodhouse’s Appalachian drawl swarmed the Washington Journal’s C-SPAN airwaves it only took a heartbeat for the brothers to realise the public humiliation that was about to unfold.
“Oh god, it’s mom,” said Dallas.
“You’re right, I’m from down south,” she said, “I’m your mother and I disagree that all families are like ours, I dont know many families that are fighting at Thanksgiving.”
Cue facepalm from Brad.
“I’m hoping that you will have some of this out of your system, when you come here for Christmas,” Mrs Woodhouse scolded.”I would really like a peaceful Christmas.”
“I love you both.”
Surprised by the identity of the random caller, Washington Journal host Steven Scully seized the opportunity to quiz Joy on what it was like raising two sons on either side of the political divide.
“It hasn’t been easy,” Mrs Woodhouse answered earnestly, before adding that it was probably her fault the brothers became so partisan because of her and her husband’s own love of politics.
Mrs Woodhouse’s spontaneous call could also have been the work of some skilled publicity.
The brothers are the subject of a documentary, Woodhouse Divided, which examines political bipartisanship and division around the country and in family homes.
But there will be one brother who might be getting more of the pecan pie from mum on December 25.
Mrs Woodhouse remains a card carrying Democrat, which bodes well for Brad. He is the president of Democrat research groups, American Bridge and American’s United for Change, which contributed over $US17 millon ($21m) to the Democrat party for the 2014 mid-term elections.
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