“I don’t understand, Pete. You were never much interested in how your clients stood on the issues before,” Hastings says.
St. John takes Cade on, but he can’t shake the feelings that something is fishy. And he’s right. The moral test is one that echoes “The Ides of March” as the idealism, and professionalism, of a veteran campaign worker is tested amid the twists and turns of hardball politics.
Another thing “Power” shares with “The Ides of March” is how it illustrates the isolation of the campaign trail and how it can wreak havoc on personal lives. Late one night in Akron, St. John talks to his ex-wife and tries to explain some of his bad behavior that led to their falling out years before.
“You got any idea what it’s like, spending 10 days massaging some pol. And wind up, one in the morning, some bar in Cleveland, notice some lady across the room, doesn’t have a lot of hair on her chin?”
This tale of late-night, long-hour weakness is also a major plot point in “The Ides of March,” where those working on the campaign have no trouble reaching out, and finding, comfort after a stressful day of work.
Movies about House and Senate campaigns don’t make up a huge body of work, but what is there makes for an interesting mix of tragic, satirical and farcical.
Roll Call has launched a new feature, Hill Navigator, to advise congressional staffers and would-be staffers on how to manage workplace issues on Capitol Hill. Please send us your questions anything from office etiquette, to handling awkward moments, to what happens when the work life gets too personal. Submissions will be treated anonymously.