Hillary Clinton famously said I’m not gonna just stand by my man like Tammy Wynette during hubby Bill Clinton’s first campaign for president (and his first series of sex scandals to draw broad public interest.) Hillary later apologized to Tammy, and despite her claims she sure did stand by Bill–from Paula Jones through Monica Lewinsky and beyond. But Camille Cosby, Bill Cosby’s unwaveringly loyal wife, is taking Wynette loyalty to a new level. Making the rounds with her embattled husband as he appears for interviews, Camille Cosby’s mere presence seeks to make a statement about her husband’s innocence. Why would anyone–the question hangs in the air–remain married to a serial rapist?
Camille Cosby’s presence by her husband’s side is meant to silently answer the question: one wouldn’t, is the answer. But Hillary was wrong–Bill Clinton was an adulterer who had a loose relationship with the truth. Bill Cosby and Camille Hanks were married in 1964. They have known each other for most of their lives–she dropped out of college to marry him. They celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary this year. They survived the 1997 murder of their son, Ennis. They have four surviving children. There’s a lot at stake in this marriage that both husband and wife would like to preserve. But at what cost?