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Deeply Divided Couple Learns How To Navigate Politics In Trump Era

The Halprins live in a house divided (politically): Marty supported Donald Trump, while Jessica supported Hillary Clinton.
Courtesy of Jessica and Marty Halprin
The Halprins live in a house divided (politically): Marty supported Donald Trump, while Jessica supported Hillary Clinton.

Many Americans are still deeply divided about the next president. That includes some married couples, like Marty and Jessica Halprin of Woodbridge, Conn. He supported Trump, she supported Clinton.

In November, they talked about their tense night watching the election results.

These days, Jessica says things have gotten less tense in their house. She says she's even noticed some cracks in Marty's support for Trump.

Marty agrees that things have gotten less tense. But he says the election made for a tough Thanksgiving with Jessica's extended family.

"I was actually banned from any conversation, any paraphernalia whatsoever, about Trump," he tells NPR's Robert Siegel.

"It was a very quiet Thanksgiving for me," he says. "To me, the tone was set before Thanksgiving even started. I didn't even get the benefit of the doubt."

Jessica notes that her husband "really self-censored."

The Halprins have received a lot of support from friends and family who are also dealing with political division in their families, Jessica says.

"I have felt a little defensive of my husband, the man whom I love, the man who deviates in such a significant way from my own reasoning in the election, and having to justify that to people. I've actually never been in that circumstance," she says.

"On the other hand, I like to lead by example, and say to my friends, say to my neighbors, that I am not afraid to have this discussion with you. And let's talk about how my husband could make the wrong decision but still be a good person," she says, with a laugh.

For his part, Marty says he is still in favor of Trump and is "still hopeful that he will do what's right for the country."

"But he does disappoint me sometimes. For example, when he did his press conference the other day and he completely shut out the CNN reporter and wouldn't even let him ask the question. The tweeting — that's him, unfortunately. But I'm not sure it should happen with the future president."

Use the audio link above to hear the full conversation.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Anjuli Sastry (she/her) is a producer on It's Been a Minute with Sam Sanders and a 2021 Nieman Journalism Foundation Visiting Fellow. During her Nieman fellowship in spring 2021, Sastry created, hosted and produced the audio and video series Where We Come From. The series tells the stories of immigrant communities of color through a personal and historical lens.