I used to stand outside the White House chanting and shouting when I was 17'
“I’VE spent three decades of my life in politics, so I jumped at the chance to do State Of Affairs. I’ve always been interested in politics, I was raised that way.
When we were growing up my parents would go door-to-door in the neighbourhood to make sure people were registered to vote.
You’d ask them questions; make sure they’d get to the polls. I started doing that with my parents when I was 10.
I grew up in a very particular time of man in the States. When I was a young teenager, the civil rights movement was in full swing. Women’s rights were starting to kick off and the gay movement happened after that. It was an exact point of time in American life when the status quo wouldn’t hold anymore. People were very active and (politics) was a part of life.
I laugh because it’s true, but I used to stand outside the White House chanting and shouting when I was 17. Then, after being in college, I progressed to going inside the chambers to try to lobby people to change their minds.
I learnt to work on policy. I found those people that I could believe in and wanted to work on their issues and campaigns. I’ve worked on political campaigns for the past 25 years and now I’m closely aligned with this president (Obama).
We do a lot of things, cultural ambassadorships with film and other things plus I spend a lot of time in failing schools around the country integrating arts into the curriculum.
I would do all of this even if I wasn’t an actor. If I was baking bread for a living, I would figure out a way that my product could somehow be put into service.
I’ve raised my two children (Mavis, 23, and Duncan, 21) to have a very strong sense of the world and responsibility so they have a full and rounded life.
My daughter is a professional equestrian and when she wanted to take a gap year I told her, ‘Well for at least two months in that year I want you to work somewhere in the world but it can’t be with animals or horses, it has to be with humans’.
She spun on me and said, ‘I’m not like you Mom. I care about people in the world but I don’t want to hug them all’.
It made me laugh but it made me feel good that my daughter is not a bratty teenager, she’s a beautiful, very strongwilled girl. I love that my kids have been exposed to this life but they are who they are and who they have to be.”