When political activists mention the brotherhood of man, they rarely mean it in a literal sense. But in the cases of these politicians, their ties are anything but figurative. From the obvious to the obscure, these political sibling pairs and trios are enough to make you wonder whether electability might be genetic.
Is it nepotism or just nice genes? You be the judge.
What name comes to mind the moment the words "politics" and "family" appear in the same sentence? The Kennedys, of course. The family is so essential to the U.S. political narrative that it even spawned its own mini-series, with Katie Holmes as the famous Jackie O.
Although their great-grandfathers lived in a poor and decimated Ireland, Jack, Teddy and Bobby Kennedy all skyrocketed to political fame in the United States.
Little brother Bobby Kennedy worked on Jack's presidential campaign. He and JFK, of course, both died in connection to the office of the presidency, leaving their brother, Ted, as the one to carry the Kennedy mantel through U.S. politics, which he did as U.S. senator of Massachusetts for almost half a century.
A new memoir suggests a twist to the relationship among the Kennedy brothers. JFK's self-proclaimed mistress, Mimi Alford, writes that the president asked her to "take care of [his] baby brother," suggesting that this implied oral sex. For her part, Alford says, she refused.
The Daley family has been called "the city equivalent of the Bush and Kennedy clans" because of its history of sending sons into politics. Brothers Richie and Bill are no exception. The two were born in Chicago -- first Richie, named for his father in 1948, then Bill, the youngest of seven siblings, in 1942. Both received high school diplomas, undergrad and law degrees from schools in the city where their father was mayor.
Richie, of course, went on to take his father's spot as mayor, serving for 23 years before handing over the reins to Rahm Emanuel. Bill Daley took over Emanuel's spot as White House chief of staff under President Obama, where he served until earlier this year. After stepping down in January, Bill took on the role of co-chair of Obama's re-election campaign in Chicago.
The heirs to the Bush mantle both found their niche as governors of Southern states, despite attending high school at a New England boarding school. Before they were shipped off to Andover, they grew up in Texas. Jeb and George had four more siblings, including a sister, Robin, who died in 1953. None of the other Bush siblings ventured into politics.
While the oldest Bush brother has clearly surpassed his little brother politically, some have hoped Jeb, too, will put in a presidential bid. In July of 2010, he seemed to be revving up for a 2012 campaign, but shortly after, he told a TV crew he was not running for president.
Carl Levin, age 78, is a long-time Senate Democrat from Michigan, first elected in 1968. Fourteen years later, older brother Sandy, 80, entered Congress. The two grew up in Detroit and attended public schools there; they also both still live in Michigan. They both testified before the House Financial Services Committee before of the auto bailout in November 2008.
Politics runs in the Levin family's blood. Sandy and Carl's father, Saul, served on the Michigan Corrections Commission, according to Carl's bio. It remains to be seen whether any of the next generation of Levins will follow in their footsteps.
Growing up in Cuba, these brothers must have gotten really good at relay races, because when Lincoln Diaz-Balart decided to step down from Congress in 2010, they passed that baton effortlessly. As Politico reported, younger brother Mario quickly switched districts and agreed to run for Lincoln's seat, which he won.
Recently, Mario has garnered airtime for his comments on the 2012 Republican primary elections and the Hispanic vote in Florida. Both Mario and Lincoln have been strong on U.S. policy toward Cuba. Their father, Rafael Diaz-Balart, was a politician exiled from Cuba who founded a political organization to oppose Fidel Castro, according to the Associated Press.
An election in Elmore, Ohio, became a family affair in November when two brothers ran against each other for mayor of the village. A month after both men told Politico that each would make a better mayor than the other, ballots were cast and Lowell Krumnow beat out his little brother. Lowell was, after all, the incumbent. Since his victory, the mayor's projects have included an initiative to bring a scaled-down replica of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall to the Elmore area.