20 Questions with Marcia Cross

This week 20Questions profiles actress Marcia Cross of ABC’s “Desperate Housewives.” She recently visited Capitol Hill as Lifetime Television’s spokeswoman to lobby for the Breast Cancer Patient Protection Act. After a morning of events on Capitol Hill, Cross retreated to a backroom at the National Press Club, where she fielded questions from the media and sipped on cappuccino. Learn more about Lifetime’s efforts at myLifetime.com.

How was your day on the Hill today?
“It was absolutely invigorating. It was a fast education and inspiring.”

Was that your first time on the Hill?
“It was my first time.”

Was it what you expected?
“I didn’t really know what to expect. It was more powerful than I anticipated, but it really made me feel passionate that this is the last time this bill is introduced.”

Did you meet a lot of lawmakers?
“I met with Joe Barton [R-Texas] and Anna Eshoo [D-Calif.].”  

Did you get a lot of stares in the hallway?
“I was told I did.”

You’re probably used to that.
“I sort of keep my focus.”

Are you anything like Bree, the character you play on “Desperate Housewives”?
“Actually, no, we probably don’t have a lot in common.”

Are you a Democrat, then?
“I want to keep it bipartisan today.”

What is the reaction to you on the street?
“In L.A. they are used to me, aside from the paparazzi following me around.”

Is that annoying?
“It’s hard when it comes to my babies. It’s frightening to the mothers in the park. I have very few problems in life right now, so I try to take that one in stride.”

What is your best beauty tip?
“Sunscreen and a hat. If more women used sunscreen and a hat they would stay beautiful for longer and not get skin cancer.”

Does the cast of “Desperate Housewives” get along? I know there was talk of tensions in the past.
“The reason you don’t hear about [that] anymore is because we all get along. Everyone misses each other [when we’re not on the set]. We’re a very tight-knit family at this point.”

Are you a desperate housewife in real life?
“I’m the happiest housewife in the world. I feel so blessed. I was desperate to be a housewife.”

Everyone knows you for that scene in “Melrose Place” when you ripped your wig off. At the time, did you think it would be so memorable?
“I guess I will never be able to live that one down. That kind of went away when Bree Van de Kamp was born.”

Who are you supporting for president?
“I won’t say who, but I’m happy that we have such incredible candidates.”

Do you like the fact that a woman is running?
“Absolutely. What’s not to like?”

Tell me about Juilliard, where you graduated.
“I got my bachelor’s in fine arts in acting. There were 13 people in my class. It was an incredible experience, a dream come true, the foundation of everything I needed to start my career.”

You also have a strong interest in psychology.
“I have my master’s in psychology. I’m endlessly interested in people, their journeys and their souls. I’m not sure what I will do with it.”

What have you done yourself in the psychological realm?
“In the past, I’ve done it all — yoga, meditation and therapy. Now I sit on the floor and play with my children and I’m all blissed out.”

To recommend a political personality for 20 Questions, call Betsy Rothstein at (202)628-8516 or email at betsyr@thehill.com