I don’t know about you, but when I think of the phrases “Jon Bon Jovi” and “politicians” my mind flashes back to the controversy over Jon’s eponymous band’s video for the 1989 song “Living In Sin,” which ruffled a ton of feathers back in the day because it showed a chick taking communion and engaging in premarital sex. Oh, the family values-obsessed wonks who came out of the woodwork for that one! But none of them, as far as I can recall, were among the politicians who the New York Times outed today as courting the New Jerseyan’s endorsement for the 2008 Presidential race, because good ol’ JBJ has apparently become, as the Times tells it, “New Jersey’s very own Bono”:
Jon Bon Jovi and Hillary Rodham Clinton have been friends for more than a decade, uniting for state dinners at the White House and campaign fund-raisers in the Hamptons.
If it seems strange that a rocker who sings paeans of working-class New Jersey is so friendly with a senator and former first lady who chose a Celine Dion song for the theme of her presidential campaign, consider a few items on Mr. Bon Jovi’s social calendar in the last few months.
There were dinners in East Hampton with Mrs. Clinton and another Democratic presidential candidate, John Edwards. Senator Barack Obama, her fiercest rival for the nomination, asked Mr. Bon Jovi to hear him speak in Midtown Manhattan. And Al Gore caught up with him in London for a photo op. …
Unlike many other celebrities, he keeps his thoughts about the war in Iraq and President Bush largely to himself. While fellow New Jerseyan Bruce Springsteen is not shy about taking Mr. Bush to task and speaks out against the war on his new album, Mr. Bon Jovi is more comfortable talking about poverty and affordable housing. And his attention to those causes has earned him an audience with some of the country’s biggest political names.
No word yet on who Jon is going to endorse–presumably he’s canvassing the Presidential hopefuls on the always-crucial issue of whether or not musicians should be able to walk around with loaded six-strings on their backs–but my guess is that it’s going to be Edwards, if only because this will give him yet another opportunity to try and ply that whole “country crossover” move.