The couple: Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard  and her partner, Tim Mathieson.      Love lesson: The non-conformist heart beats to its  own drum.        As the first Australian prime minister not to be married to her partner,  Gillard's heard her fair share of jokes about her relationship with Mathieson. Debates  have raged over whether the courting couple should be considered fodder for the  public eye, which hasn't stopped the duo from the occasional PDA. But it's  possible she won't be unmarried for long: Mathieson, a former hairdresser who has been married  before and has three children, has told the press he would like  to wed his flame-haired prime minister.       Above, Gillard kisses Mathieson during the Labor Party campaign launch on  Aug. 16, 2010, in Brisbane, Australia.

Presidential Displays of Affection

Start Slideshow View as a List
The couple: Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard  and her partner, Tim Mathieson.      Love lesson: The non-conformist heart beats to its  own drum.        As the first Australian prime minister not to be married to her partner,  Gillard's heard her fair share of jokes about her relationship with Mathieson. Debates  have raged over whether the courting couple should be considered fodder for the  public eye, which hasn't stopped the duo from the occasional PDA. But it's  possible she won't be unmarried for long: Mathieson, a former hairdresser who has been married  before and has three children, has told the press he would like  to wed his flame-haired prime minister.       Above, Gillard kisses Mathieson during the Labor Party campaign launch on  Aug. 16, 2010, in Brisbane, Australia.

The couple: Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard and her partner, Tim Mathieson.

Love lesson: The non-conformist heart beats to its own drum.

As the first Australian prime minister not to be married to her partner, Gillard's heard her fair share of jokes about her relationship with Mathieson. Debates have raged over whether the courting couple should be considered fodder for the public eye, which hasn't stopped the duo from the occasional PDA. But it's possible she won't be unmarried for long: Mathieson, a former hairdresser who has been married before and has three children, has told the press he would like to wed his flame-haired prime minister.

Above, Gillard kisses Mathieson during the Labor Party campaign launch on Aug. 16, 2010, in Brisbane, Australia.

The couple: British Prime Minister David Cameron and his wife, Samantha.      Love lesson: True love knows no austerity.        Prime Minister David Cameron says his  wedding day was the most memorable 24  hours of his life.  Shown here after nine years of wedded bliss, the then-newly elected Conservative Party leader kisses his wife Samantha after giving his acceptance speech on Dec. 6,  2005, in London.

The couple: British Prime Minister David Cameron and his wife, Samantha.

Love lesson: True love knows no austerity.

Prime Minister David Cameron says his wedding day was the most memorable 24 hours of his life. Shown here after nine years of wedded bliss, the then-newly elected Conservative Party leader kisses his wife Samantha after giving his acceptance speech on Dec. 6, 2005, in London.

The couple: German  Chancellor Angela Merkel and her husband, Joachim Sauer.      Love lesson: Quiet love burns as brightly as showy  romance.       Chancellor Angela Merkel has a reputation as a  straight-laced realist, but behind every great woman is a great  quantum chemistry researcher. Here, Merkel  and husband Joachim Sauer arrive on the red carpet ahead  of the opening performance of Tannhaeuser  at the 100th edition of the Wagner opera festival in Germany on  July 25, 2011. Sauer, whose name means "sour," or "grumpy"  in German, is so publicity-shy he didn't  even attend  Merkel's inauguration in 2005. He spent the ceremony holed away in his  chemistry lab in Berlin, although he swears he watched it on television. But  Merkel and Sauer are used to doing things their own way. It's the second  marriage for both of them: They met when they both worked at the Academy of  Sciences in the 1980s, and although they lived together for many years, they  didn't marry until 1998, when Merkel was warned that her career might be  jeopardized if she didn't get hitched.

The couple: German Chancellor Angela Merkel and her husband, Joachim Sauer.

Love lesson: Quiet love burns as brightly as showy romance.

Chancellor Angela Merkel has a reputation as a straight-laced realist, but behind every great woman is a great quantum chemistry researcher. Here, Merkel and husband Joachim Sauer arrive on the red carpet ahead of the opening performance of Tannhaeuser at the 100th edition of the Wagner opera festival in Germany on July 25, 2011. Sauer, whose name means "sour," or "grumpy" in German, is so publicity-shy he didn't even attend Merkel's inauguration in 2005. He spent the ceremony holed away in his chemistry lab in Berlin, although he swears he watched it on television. But Merkel and Sauer are used to doing things their own way. It's the second marriage for both of them: They met when they both worked at the Academy of Sciences in the 1980s, and although they lived together for many years, they didn't marry until 1998, when Merkel was warned that her career might be jeopardized if she didn't get hitched.

The couple: Chinese President Hu Jintao and his wife, Liu  Yongqing.      Love lesson: Small gestures matter.       Above, President Hu Jintao looks on as Russian  President Dmitry Medvedev presents flowers to Hu's wife, Liu Yongqing,  during a welcome ceremony at the Kremlin on June 16, 2011. Hu may appear stone-faced, but we detect a flicker in his eye that says, "One more word to  my wife, and you'll be facing your own reset." Hu met his wife when they were  both students at Beijing's Tsinghua University. Liu has accompanied her reserved husband on  official trips all over the world, and while there may not be many pictures of them snogging, we'd like to think their globetrotting is a sign of how much  they enjoy each others' company.

The couple: Chinese President Hu Jintao and his wife, Liu Yongqing.

Love lesson: Small gestures matter.

Above, President Hu Jintao looks on as Russian President Dmitry Medvedev presents flowers to Hu's wife, Liu Yongqing, during a welcome ceremony at the Kremlin on June 16, 2011. Hu may appear stone-faced, but we detect a flicker in his eye that says, "One more word to my wife, and you'll be facing your own reset." Hu met his wife when they were both students at Beijing's Tsinghua University. Liu has accompanied her reserved husband on official trips all over the world, and while there may not be many pictures of them snogging, we'd like to think their globetrotting is a sign of how much they enjoy each others' company.

The couple: Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad  and his wife, Fatemeh.      Love lesson: Sometimes power couples keep it under wraps.          Above, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad sits next to his wife  during a campaign rally in Tehran on June 2, 2009. Fatemeh Sadat Farahi was a  classmate of Ahmadinejad's when he studied at the Iran University of Science  and Technology, and they married when he was 24, in 1981. Fatemeh has been a  relatively quiet first lady, and never appears in public without her chador,  but she will speak up for a cause she believes in. In 2009, she sent  Suzanne Mubarak, wife of deposed Egyptian president Hosni, a letter, suggesting  Egypt's first lady urge her husband to support Gaza's oppressed people. We can  only assume she also puts the pressure on Mahmoud when needed.

The couple: Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and his wife, Fatemeh.

Love lesson: Sometimes power couples keep it under wraps.

Above, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad sits next to his wife during a campaign rally in Tehran on June 2, 2009. Fatemeh Sadat Farahi was a classmate of Ahmadinejad's when he studied at the Iran University of Science and Technology, and they married when he was 24, in 1981. Fatemeh has been a relatively quiet first lady, and never appears in public without her chador, but she will speak up for a cause she believes in. In 2009, she sent Suzanne Mubarak, wife of deposed Egyptian president Hosni, a letter, suggesting Egypt's first lady urge her husband to support Gaza's oppressed people. We can only assume she also puts the pressure on Mahmoud when needed.

The couple: French  President Nicolas Sarkozy and his wife, Carla Bruni.      Love lesson: Let it all hang out.      Sitting down, it's nearly impossible to tell that  French President Nicolas Sarkozy might need to stand on tip toes to kiss his 4 inch taller, former supermodel wife Carla. Relaxing eye-level in the back of the Clipper Aurora, headed  for England on March 27, 2008, the president cozied up to his wife during a  two-day state visit to London and Windsor. The couple, who married in a civil  ceremony in Paris in 2008 only 9 weeks after meeting, welcomed a baby girl named Giulia in October 2011. While some commenters pooh-poohed their  whirlwind romance (and the fact that they met only a month after Sarkozy  separated from his second wife, Cécilia Ciganer-Albéniz) the couple have stood by  each other, in heels and in flats, through it all.

The couple: French President Nicolas Sarkozy and his wife, Carla Bruni.

Love lesson: Let it all hang out.

Sitting down, it's nearly impossible to tell that French President Nicolas Sarkozy might need to stand on tip toes to kiss his 4 inch taller, former supermodel wife Carla. Relaxing eye-level in the back of the Clipper Aurora, headed for England on March 27, 2008, the president cozied up to his wife during a two-day state visit to London and Windsor. The couple, who married in a civil ceremony in Paris in 2008 only 9 weeks after meeting, welcomed a baby girl named Giulia in October 2011. While some commenters pooh-poohed their whirlwind romance (and the fact that they met only a month after Sarkozy separated from his second wife, Cécilia Ciganer-Albéniz) the couple have stood by each other, in heels and in flats, through it all.

The couple: Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy and  his wife, Elvira.      Love lesson: Communication is key.      On Nov. 20, 2011, the first thing that newly elected  Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy did after stepping onto the balcony at the Popular  Party's headquarters to declare victory was to kiss his wife, Elvira. A  fellow Galician, Elvira has been a quiet first lady, referred  to as "a woman almost invisible" by the Spanish press. Still, she  says that like in any marriage, she and her husband "talk  about everything." They met at a bar in 1992, and Mariano said in his memoirs,  "From the first  moment I felt that this woman, so beautiful and with such a remarkable  personality, a woman at the same time discreet and intelligent  --  I  would not remain indifferent for life."

The couple: Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy and his wife, Elvira.

Love lesson: Communication is key.

On Nov. 20, 2011, the first thing that newly elected Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy did after stepping onto the balcony at the Popular Party's headquarters to declare victory was to kiss his wife, Elvira. A fellow Galician, Elvira has been a quiet first lady, referred to as "a woman almost invisible" by the Spanish press. Still, she says that like in any marriage, she and her husband "talk about everything." They met at a bar in 1992, and Mariano said in his memoirs, "From the first moment I felt that this woman, so beautiful and with such a remarkable personality, a woman at the same time discreet and intelligent -- I would not remain indifferent for life."

The couple: U.S.  President Barack Obama and his wife, Michelle.      Love lesson: Marriage can be fun, if you do it right.           We know  President Obama loves to sing  love songs to the First Lady,  and recently  to the rest of the world,  but the president probably had a few sweet sweet nothings whispered into his ear by Michelle before signing into law the  Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010  at Harriet Tubman Elementary School in Washington, D.C. on Dec. 13, 2010. Their balance  of romance and practical mutual support is the gold standard for happy wedlock.  For years, the couple has been hungry  for each other's affection and intellectual appetites, and is known for their blissful  balance and graceful dances.

The couple: U.S. President Barack Obama and his wife, Michelle.

Love lesson: Marriage can be fun, if you do it right.

We know President Obama loves to sing love songs to the First Lady, and recently to the rest of the world, but the president probably had a few sweet sweet nothings whispered into his ear by Michelle before signing into law the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010 at Harriet Tubman Elementary School in Washington, D.C. on Dec. 13, 2010. Their balance of romance and practical mutual support is the gold standard for happy wedlock. For years, the couple has been hungry for each other's affection and intellectual appetites, and is known for their blissful balance and graceful dances.

The couple: Belgium's King Albert II and Queen Paola.      Love lesson: Sometimes, you have to forgive.       Above, King Albert II and Queen Paola snuggle while in  Brussels on June 19, 2008. The daughter of Italian Prince Ruffo di Calabria,  the sixth Duke of Guardia Lombarda, Paola celebrated her "golden  anniversary" after 50 years of marriage with Albert in 2009. All wasn't  always merry in the royal marriage, however; rumors  that a young Prince Albert fathered a love child with his mistress in 1968  refuse to die.

The couple: Belgium's King Albert II and Queen Paola.

Love lesson: Sometimes, you have to forgive.

Above, King Albert II and Queen Paola snuggle while in Brussels on June 19, 2008. The daughter of Italian Prince Ruffo di Calabria, the sixth Duke of Guardia Lombarda, Paola celebrated her "golden anniversary" after 50 years of marriage with Albert in 2009. All wasn't always merry in the royal marriage, however; rumors that a young Prince Albert fathered a love child with his mistress in 1968 refuse to die.

The couple: Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and his  wife, Asma.      Love lesson: There's someone for everyone.        President Bashar al-Assad's bloody crackdown in  Syria has focused international attention on his murderous regime, with  shocking videos of attacks in the flashpoint city of Homs and elsewhere drawing  condemnation for the regime. But not long ago, Assad and his wife Asma were  welcomed as part of the new Arab jet set. A year later, as the crackdown began, Vogue  magazine angered readers by running a ill-timed glowing profile of Asma, titled "A  Rose in the Desert." Assad may now be one of the most  hated leaders in the world, but it seems the couple is standing together.

The couple: Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and his wife, Asma.

Love lesson: There's someone for everyone.

President Bashar al-Assad's bloody crackdown in Syria has focused international attention on his murderous regime, with shocking videos of attacks in the flashpoint city of Homs and elsewhere drawing condemnation for the regime. But not long ago, Assad and his wife Asma were welcomed as part of the new Arab jet set. A year later, as the crackdown began, Vogue magazine angered readers by running a ill-timed glowing profile of Asma, titled "A Rose in the Desert." Assad may now be one of the most hated leaders in the world, but it seems the couple is standing together.

The couple: Colombian Vice President Francisco  Santos Calderon and his wife, Maria Victoria Garcia.      Love lesson: Live with passion.        Above, Vice President Francisco  Santos Calderon kisses his wife Maria Victoria Garcia during a visit to Moscow  on June 4, 2008. In 1990, Mr. Santos was kidnapped by Pablo Escobar, the leader  of the Medellín drug cartel. Along with 10 other journalists, he was held for nearly  eight months as his kidnappers tried to prevent the Colombian government from  extraditing drug traffickers to the United States. He's focused human rights activism ever  since, with the support of his wife.

The couple: Colombian Vice President Francisco Santos Calderon and his wife, Maria Victoria Garcia.

Love lesson: Live with passion.

Above, Vice President Francisco Santos Calderon kisses his wife Maria Victoria Garcia during a visit to Moscow on June 4, 2008. In 1990, Mr. Santos was kidnapped by Pablo Escobar, the leader of the Medellín drug cartel. Along with 10 other journalists, he was held for nearly eight months as his kidnappers tried to prevent the Colombian government from extraditing drug traffickers to the United States. He's focused human rights activism ever since, with the support of his wife.

The couple: Irish President Michael D. Higgins and  his wife, Sabina.       Love lesson: Govern in prose, love in  poetry.      President Michael D. Higgins and his wife Sabina  kiss each other after the official announcement of the Irish presidential  election's results at Dublin Castle on Oct. 29, 2011. Higgins was officially confirmed  as his country's 9th president after two days of ballot counting. The 70-year-old  former culture minister for the Labour Party listed his occupations as  "poet" and "lecturer," and beat an ex-IRA commander and a  reality TV star to take over the ceremonial post. Michael's wife Sabina is an  actress who grew up on a farm. Michael met her in 1969 and proposed at  Christmas in 1973. They have four children together.

The couple: Irish President Michael D. Higgins and his wife, Sabina.

Love lesson: Govern in prose, love in poetry.

President Michael D. Higgins and his wife Sabina kiss each other after the official announcement of the Irish presidential election's results at Dublin Castle on Oct. 29, 2011. Higgins was officially confirmed as his country's 9th president after two days of ballot counting. The 70-year-old former culture minister for the Labour Party listed his occupations as "poet" and "lecturer," and beat an ex-IRA commander and a reality TV star to take over the ceremonial post. Michael's wife Sabina is an actress who grew up on a farm. Michael met her in 1969 and proposed at Christmas in 1973. They have four children together.

The couple: Bhutanese King Jigme Khesar Namgyel  Wangchuck and  Queen Jetsun Pema.      Love lesson: Love knows no boundaries.        King Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck kisses Queen  Jetsun Pema during a ceremony at the main stadium in Thimphu in Bhutan on Oct. 15,  2011. Bhutan's newly married 31-year-old king and his 21-year-old bride greeted  huge crowds of well-wishers on Oct. 14 as they made their way on foot back to  the capital along windy Himalayan roads. The hugely popular king married and crowned Jetsun Pema, the commoner daughter of an  airline pilot, reviving the Cinderella fantasies of Himalayan women everywhere.

The couple: Bhutanese King Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck and Queen Jetsun Pema.

Love lesson: Love knows no boundaries.

King Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck kisses Queen Jetsun Pema during a ceremony at the main stadium in Thimphu in Bhutan on Oct. 15, 2011. Bhutan's newly married 31-year-old king and his 21-year-old bride greeted huge crowds of well-wishers on Oct. 14 as they made their way on foot back to the capital along windy Himalayan roads. The hugely popular king married and crowned Jetsun Pema, the commoner daughter of an airline pilot, reviving the Cinderella fantasies of Himalayan women everywhere.

The couple: Turkish  President Abdullah Gul and his wife, Hayrunnisa.      Love lesson: It's what's in your heart  -- not on top of your head -- that matters.       President  Abdullah Gul's wife, Hayrunnisa, wears a tangible symbol of the country's decades-long struggle  between East and West on her head (and  a fierce fashion choice on her feet).  When Gul was elected in 2007,  Hayrunnisa received attention for wearing a traditional headscarf -- a symbol  of her religious identity -- that is banned in many public buildings across the  state. Though Turkey is 99 percent  Muslim, many saw this act as a veiled attack on the country's secular foundations. However, the couple has stood firm in their beliefs and  their love for one another.       Here, Gul and Hayrunnisa arrive for the NATO Summit on  Nov. 19, 2010, in Lisbon, Portugal.

The couple: Turkish President Abdullah Gul and his wife, Hayrunnisa.

Love lesson: It's what's in your heart -- not on top of your head -- that matters.

President Abdullah Gul's wife, Hayrunnisa, wears a tangible symbol of the country's decades-long struggle between East and West on her head (and a fierce fashion choice on her feet). When Gul was elected in 2007, Hayrunnisa received attention for wearing a traditional headscarf -- a symbol of her religious identity -- that is banned in many public buildings across the state. Though Turkey is 99 percent Muslim, many saw this act as a veiled attack on the country's secular foundations. However, the couple has stood firm in their beliefs and their love for one another.

Here, Gul and Hayrunnisa arrive for the NATO Summit on Nov. 19, 2010, in Lisbon, Portugal.

The couple: Republican  presidential candidate Mitt Romney and his wife, Ann.      Love lesson: One is enough.        Republican presidential candidate and former Massachusetts governor, Mitt Romney, kisses his wife, Ann, at the Red Rock  Casino on Feb. 4 in Las Vegas. The Mormon couple were each other's teenage  sweethearts in Utah, and now, after  42-years as husband and wife,  Mitt  still calls Ann "my  bride."

The couple: Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney and his wife, Ann.

Love lesson: One is enough.

Republican presidential candidate and former Massachusetts governor, Mitt Romney, kisses his wife, Ann, at the Red Rock Casino on Feb. 4 in Las Vegas. The Mormon couple were each other's teenage sweethearts in Utah, and now, after 42-years as husband and wife, Mitt still calls Ann "my bride."

The couple: Prince  Albert of Monaco and Princess Charlene.      Love lesson: The road to true love never  runs smooth.      Still wearing wedding-day white,  Princess Charlene, lends a  cheek to her husband, Prince Albert of Monaco, before a meeting with South African  President Jacob Zuma in Durban, South Africa, on July 6, 2011. Princess  Charlene, who trained for South Africa's Olympic swim team, is used to staying  active, but after juggling a honeymoon that was both business and pleasure and dodging rampant  rumors over her much older  husband's infidelity,  the 33-year-old princess might need a breather.

The couple: Prince Albert of Monaco and Princess Charlene.

Love lesson: The road to true love never runs smooth.

Still wearing wedding-day white, Princess Charlene, lends a cheek to her husband, Prince Albert of Monaco, before a meeting with South African President Jacob Zuma in Durban, South Africa, on July 6, 2011. Princess Charlene, who trained for South Africa's Olympic swim team, is used to staying active, but after juggling a honeymoon that was both business and pleasure and dodging rampant rumors over her much older husband's infidelity, the 33-year-old princess might need a breather.

Previous Next Close