Mary Joe Matalin (born 19 September 1953) is an American political strategist and consultant for the Republican Party. She was an assistant to President George W. Bush and counselor to Vice President Dick Cheney until 2003. In April 2004, she published the book Letters to My Daughters. In March of 2005, Matalin was chosen to run a new conservative publishing imprint at Simon & Schuster. She is married to James Carville, political strategist for the Democratic Party.
In April 2006, she was appointed Treasurer of Virginia Republican Party (United States) Senator George Allen's re-election committee. In June 2007 it was reported that she was likely to play a role in the presidential campaign of Fred Thompson.
Matalin grew up in Calumet City Illinois. She attended Thornton Fractional North High School and attended Western Illinois University. She was homecoming queen her Junior year of High School. Her first campaign was Illinois Lieutenant Governor Dave O'Neal's bid for the U.S. Senate in 1980, a race O'Neal lost to Alan Dixon. She briefly attended law school at Hofstra University, but did not graduate. Subsequently Matalin worked for the Republican National Committee as an aide to Rich Bond. She later became a senior aide to Lee Atwater, first coming to prominence in the 1988 campaign of George H.W. Bush in which she served for a time as Midwest field director.
She is married to James Carville, political strategist for the Democratic Party. Both Matalin and Carville have gone on record saying that they don't talk politics at home. In the 1992 political campaign both Matalin and Carville were staffing opposite campaigns. Matalin wrote the best-selling book All's Fair: Love, War and Running for President with Carville and co-author Peter Knobler.
White House Iraq Group
Matalin, a colleague of Karl Rove, worked for Vice President Dick Cheney in the White House. She attended meetings of the White House Iraq Group, a secretive internal White House task force convened in August 2002 (seven months before the 2003 Invasion of Iraq). WHIG was charged with the task of convincing the US public of the potential threat of Saddam Hussein's alleged violations of international law in his refusal to cooperate with United Nations weapons inspectors.
Matalin resigned her responsibilities as of 31 December 2002. Although Matalin left the White House more than six months before the leak that triggered the Valerie Plame scandal, she is reported to have testified before the grand jury of Special Counsel Patrick Fitzgerald. (Notes and records of WHIG meetings were subpoenaed by Fitzgerald in January 2004.)
Like Carville, she was a host of CNN's Crossfire political debate show, and in 1993, she hosted Equal Time, which aired on the CNBC business television channel. Matalin was also the host of her own talk radio show in the 1990s, "The Mary Matalin Show," which was carried on the CBS Radio Network. 
Matalin also appeared alongside her husband James Carville in HBO's 2003 television show K Street where she and her husband played versions of themselves as they lobbied real and fictional politicians. The show was directed by Academy Award winner Steven Soderbergh and featured a cast of fictional and real characters working in the political sphere.