The Article: Oedipus Rex Complex by Maureen Dowd in The New York Times.
The Text: American politics bristles with Oedipal drama.
Sons struggling to live up to fathers. Sons striving to outdo fathers. Sons scheming to avenge fathers. Sons burning to one-up fathers. Sons yearning to impress fathers who vanished early on. Sons leaning on fathers. Sons using fathers as reverse-play books.
John McCain was the raffish and rebellious Navy flier son of a stern four-star admiral who commanded the Vietnam theater where McCain was a P.O.W. Al Gore was the wooden good son of a Tennessee senator who was a fiery orator.
Bill Clinton, Newt Gingrich and Barack Obama had to climb the ladder without the huge benefit that J.F.K., W., Mitt Romney and Jon Huntsman Jr. had — the obsessive support of wealthy and well-connected dads.