What a scoop: Time to play catch up

Lyssa Beyer

Hey, remember when the primary campaigns were going on? Me neither! How long ago does it seem when we were being wooed by Barack, stood up by Hillary and made to feel pity for Huckabee? I hardly remember it at all, just bits and pieces about steakhouses and water bottles that really don’t make sense any more. In the weeks following the Wisconsin primary, I began to hear less and less about both the Republican and Democratic races – I figured they got bored and decided not to elect a new president this year. The one we got right now isn’t so bad, right? Right?

As often is the case, though, I was completely and embarrassingly wrong. While waiting for “My Dad is Better than Your Dad” to start, I saw Brian Williams say we are still going to elect a new president, whether we the people like it or not. The primary season continues on for Sens. John McCain, Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama, although considerably differently for each candidate. Befuddled by this new bit of information, I went on the Internet to find there indeed is still much to be determined in the primary season.

So despite falling off the media’s map, McCain, Clinton and Obama are still actively seeking the office of the presidency. I’m sure there are still a few people out there who care about this sort of thing, so I decided to scrounge up as much information as possible concerning each candidate’s whereabouts in the past month as well as their electoral outlooks. All this is for the benefit of curious Americans wondering where that nice black man, really old guy and scary lady have gone.

Sen. John McCain
Having vanquished his opponents in the Republican primaries, McCain has entered the Spring Interregnum, which isn’t as dirty as it sounds. Basically, this means McCain must look to unite his party in preparation for the coming battle with the Democrats; to do this, he must learn to shut up.

Yes, shutting up is perhaps McCain’s best chance at victory come November. He knows better than to talk about gay marriage, abortion or working with Democrats in Congress after his 2000 primary debacle. If McCain knows what’s good for him, he’ll run away somewhere most people don’t like thinking about anymore …

… Such as Iraq! McCain kicked off his presidential election campaign with a visit to Baghdad, which I thought was a terrible strategic blunder. Someone in the McCain camp had to know Iraq has no votes in the Electoral College (not yet at least), making his first campaign stop a fruitless one. Fifty states, John, fifty! Just count the stars if you’re not sure!

Outlook: As long as he only talks to his immediate family, doesn’t stump in foreign countries and keeps his eyes downward and hands at his sides when around attractive female lobbyists, he will be tough to beat come November.

Sen. Barack Obama
You know, I have an interesting story about Obama’s time in Eau Claire. I was standing at a vending machine, perusing my options, when I saw a bright light out of the corner of my eye. I turned to look and it was Obama, bathed in a celestial glow as he always is. He walked up to me and said, “Young man, let me tell you something. I am here hoping for change …” I stared at him intently, waiting to hear the details. After a brief moment, he said, “Because I see this machine only takes singles and all I’ve got is a five.”

After I broke a Lincoln for the senator, he walked off with his Nutter Butter bars and back on the campaign trail. In recent weeks, Obama has had to deal with the controversies involving religion, notably one surrounding an old pastor he had at the Trinity United Church of Christ who said God should “damn America” in a 2003 sermon. A quick bit of spin-doctoring could have easily fixed the situation, though – Obama should have said his pastor was saying “dam America,” specifically around New Orleans. Nobody could disagree with this statement post-Katrina, thus turning a difficult situation into a public relations coup.

Outlook: If more people go out to see Obama give speeches that don’t mention religion at all than go out to see him bowl (he sucks), then he will be in good shape to secure the nomination.

Sen. Hillary Clinton
After clawing her way back into the race with wins in Texas and Ohio, Clinton finds herself reeling again after her chief strategist resigned. Clinton, who also sucks at bowling, asked Mark Penn to step down after he was pushing for a trade agreement with Colombia her platform didn’t agree with. I wonder if that agreement had something to do with actually showing up to places you said you were going to? I can see why she wouldn’t agree with that.

Clinton recently said she doesn’t think the Penn controversy will hurt her. Well, I imagine she physically will go unharmed, but I also agree with her if she was referring to her campaign. Certainly, this won’t hurt her chances to win the nomination – I think that’ll happen more as a result of her being a Clinton and a woman. It’s time for a change from the Clintons and the Bushes of the nearly last two decades, even if that change isn’t necessarily better! Vote or die, kids!

Outlook: If the cast of “SNL” are superdelegates, Clinton has a chance; if not, it’s back to the drudgery of her low-profile U.S. Senate position.

Rep. Ron Paul
Hm … nope, still crazy.

Outlook: Crazy … toys in the attic, he is crazy …

Hopefully now we are all caught up on our wacky presidential candidates, allowing us to make an informed decision come … uh, November, I guess. Hm … that’s a far ways off, I think we might have to do this again at least once. I’m sure there’s a sound, democratic reason why the presidential campaign season is so long (hint: it’s so only rich people can win). Have fun waiting to vote again!

Langton is a senior print journalism major and editorial editor of The Spectator. “What a Scoop!” appears every Thursday.