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Barbie for president!
Posted By Julie Foster On 05/01/2000 @ 1:00 am In Front Page | Comments Disabled
With the battles for nominations seemingly over, candidates in the 2000 presidential election suddenly face an unexpected rival, one who threatens to capture much of the younger electorate, and whose just-announced candidacy has elicited a terse response from the White House.
The “Barbie for President” campaign was announced last week and included the launch of an
official campaign website that outlines her position on various topics — including education, the environment and gender equality.
|Barbie? is an official member of the “Party of Girls” and has her own campaign website.|
What party nomination is this one-foot-tall, plastic-complexioned beauty seeking? Barbie is the candidate for the “Party of Girls,” according to
Mattel spokeswoman Julia Jensen. However, the candidate will attend both Republican and Democrat conventions in a mysterious and “creative” appearance.
While both the leading candidates have had to contend with awkward questions about their past, Barbie has perhaps the most exotic track record of any of the presidential hopefuls.
“With over 75 careers in 41 years, she is uniquely qualified to run for the presidency,” Jensen told WorldNetDaily.
Arriving on the public scene during President Eisenhower’s term in the White House, Barbie has been a ballerina, a country-western singer, astronaut, doctor and, of course, a beauty queen.
This is her second bid for the nation’s highest elected office, the first being eight years ago against President George Bush and then-Arkansas Gov. Bill Clinton.
This time around, Barbie is taking her candidacy more seriously and polling her constituents for their views. The
online survey includes seven questions related to participants’ age, home state and policy matters.
One survey question asks, “Which issue is most important to you?” The multiple-choice answers include: a) protecting our environment, b) protecting animals, c) girls and boys having equal opportunities and d) getting the best education possible.
Participants are polled as to what they believe is the “biggest problem in your school today.” Answer options range from “not enough arts and music programs” to “too much pressure” and “teasing and fighting.”
Another question seeks Barbie supporters’ opinion on the “biggest problem in our country today,” to which they may respond, “too many disadvantaged people,” “too much crime,” or “kids can’t vote on things that affect them.”
Survey answers are compiled daily and posted on Barbie’s campaign website. As of Friday, most participants were ages 9 to 11, from New York, and believe protecting animals and eliminating teasing and fighting in schools should be their candidate’s top priorities.
Jensen said survey answers will be used to create Barbie’s official platform — to be announced by early July — that “reflects the opinions of real girls around the country.”
Sounding a note of embarrassment for the politically-correct Barbie campaign, Jensen confessed that “no one’s responding to the equality question” — which asks girls if they believe equal opportunity for boys and girls is important. Jensen said she doubted women in their early 20s would ignore the statement, and suggested young girls simply do not recognize gender disparity.
But just which “mainstream” candidate will face the most competition from the blue suit-clad bombshell? WND compared Barbie’s policy positions with those of
Gov. George W. Bush,
Vice President Al Gore and
Ambassador Alan Keyes and found that Gore may have a hard time distinguishing his positions from those of his newest rival.
Barbie turning Election 2000 into Gore v. Doll
On education, Gore states, “Together, we must bring revolutionary change to our public schools. I want to work with parents, teachers, and principals to create the modern classrooms, higher standards, and smaller class sizes your irreplaceable kid deserves.”
From “What Barbie Believes,” found on her website: “Barbie believes in education! From music and arts to math and science; from sports programs to computers, Barbie plans to make sure every school offers kids the best.”
On the environment, Gore says, “Because of its importance to our air, our water, and the fabric of life itself, I believe that we have an obligation to protect the environment for future generations.”
Barbie believes “it’s time we take a stand to care for Mother Earth. Clean air, clean water, and a clean environment are vital to our health. Barbie knows our playgrounds, our parks and our neighborhoods will be more kid-safe and kid-friendly if we keep them clean.”
Like Gore, Barbie is also an advocate of animal protection, saying she “believes in kindness to all creatures. All animals deserve protection, care and a happy life.”
And how does the Vice President feel about his new competition?
“Barbie … um … can’t think she’s gonna have much of an impact on the race, unless they run Malibu Barbie and then maybe California will be impacted,” joked White House spokesman Joe Lockhart in response to a reporter’s question last week.
In addition to her statements of belief, the Barbie for President website offers a section called “Road to the White House,” which is intended to be an educational tool for girls perusing the site. The section walks girls through a simplified outline of the presidential election process.
Mattel hopes the Barbie for President project will open dialogue between parents and children about the election process and voting responsibility.
To reinforce the educational aspect of the project, Mattel will set up voting booths in
Toys R Us stores in major cities across the United States. New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, Miami and Washington, D.C. stores will open polls from May 20 to 21, allowing children to vote for their candidate.
The Barbie? doll line is one of the most successful in history, with sales of more than $1.5 billion in 1999. According to Mattel, the average American girl between the ages of 3 and 11 owns ten Barbie dolls, and the doll is currently sold in more than 150 countries around the world.
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