Pitt, Obama, Bush; Clinton, Jolie, Madonna--all related!
Separated at birth: Barack Obama and Brad Pitt? Hillary Clinton and Angelina Jolie?
Not quite, but according to researchers at the New England Historic Genealogical Society -- the country's oldest nonprofit genealogical organization -- the Democratic power brokers are each related to the Hollywood power couple.
Never mind six degrees of separation: We're talking family here. As in kissin' cousins.
If Jackie Kennedy set the tone for Camelot by having Pablo Casals play the White House, Hillary could channel the pop era, and she wouldn't have to do anything but invite her relatives: Madonna, Celine Dion, and Alanis Morissette are all in the family. loading...
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As if she needed any more tabloid trouble attached to her attachments, it turns out she's also related to the wife of Prince Charles -- Camilla Parker Bowles, the Other Woman who broke up the happy home he shared with Lady Di.
Obama, on the other hand, comes by his multi-racial appeal quite naturally: roosting in his family tree are both George W. Bush and his father, plus Lyndon Johnson, Harry Truman and James Madison. Not to mention Dick Cheney, Winston Churchill, and Robert E. Lee.
"His kinships are across the political spectrum," says Genealogist Christopher Child, who has has spent the last three years tracing the candidates' genealogy, along with senior research scholar Gary Boyd Roberts, author of the 1989 book, "Ancestors of American Presidents."
While the candidates often focus on pointing out differences between them, their ancestry shows they are more alike than they think. "It shows that lots of different people can be related, people you wouldn't necessarily expect," Child said.
So, where in the family trees do we find these particular branches?
Obama and President Bush are 10th cousins, once removed, linked by Samuel Hinkley of Cape Cod, who died in 1662.
Pitt and Obama are ninth cousins, linked by Edwin Hickman, who died in Virginia in 1769.
Clinton and Jolie are also ninth cousins, twice removed, both related to Jean Cusson who died in St. Sulpice, Quebec, in 1718.
Now we know about the skeletons lurking in those Democratic closets, what about John McCain?
According to Child, McCain's ancestry was more difficult to trace because records on his relatives were not as complete as records for the families of Obama and Clinton. Still, he said, McCain is a sixth cousin of first lady Laura Bush.