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As I write this, John Kerry has just won a couple more primaries. The only question remaining, assuming that the ketchup heiress doesn’t file for divorce on the grounds the senator is the world’s ugliest transvestite, is who will be his running mate.

One hears all sorts of names being bandied about, ranging from John Edwards and Howard Dean to Bill Richardson and Hillary Clinton. Just about the only living, breathing Democrats who would appear to be out of contention are Ted Kennedy and Michael Dukakis.

But, fortunately, not being a liberal, I don’t have to concern myself with those matters. However, because I hope Bush hangs on to the Oval Office, I would like to see him dump Dick Cheney. I have nothing against the vice-president, but I don’t think he adds anything to a ticket in what could be a very tight race. What I would suggest, if anyone were to ask, is that Cheney and Condoleezza Rice swap jobs in 2004.

My biggest concern, quite honestly, is that Kerry has a height advantage over Bush. Far more often than not, the American electorate seems to base its final decision on nothing more substantial than that. As a result, Shaquille O’Neal has a better chance of winding up in the White House than a woman or a Jew.

The fact of the matter is that most presidential elections are pretty close, at least in terms of popular, if not electoral, votes. There is a good reason for this, and it’s comparable to what happens in baseball. Basically, every team – no matter how good – is going to lose a third of its 162 games, and every team – no matter how lousy – is going to win a third of its games. It’s what they do in those other 54 games that determines where they wind up.

So it is with presidential races. The Democrats could nominate a baboon and he’d get 40 percent of the votes. The Republicans could nominate a duck and he could count on garnering an equal share. It’s how well they do with the remaining 20 percent that determines which first lady gets to select the china pattern for the next four years.

At present, the Democrats are hyping Kerry’s war record in Vietnam, and labeling George W. Bush a deserter. I don’t think you have to be a conservative to recognize this as the weirdest spectacle since Alice sat down to have tea with a rabbit and a titmouse.

Where to start? War hero Kerry threw his medals away in disgust and then matched Jane Fonda’s hysterical rhetoric in slandering American soldiers. As a U.S. senator from the most liberal state in the Union, he proudly voted against every weapons system that came along and helped Bill Clinton scuttle our intelligence network. After years of lending his voice to the chorus claiming Saddam Hussein possessed WMD, he voted along with most of his colleagues to invade Iraq. Then, while paying lip service to the brave men and women doing the fighting, he voted against supporting them with the $87 billion requested by the president.

To top things off, he now claims he had been misled by faulty intelligence. Inasmuch as it was the very same intelligence that Clinton had depended upon when he bombed the hell out of Baghdad in 1998 and that Bush depended upon in 2003, it’s not clear how he gets to be an innocent dupe, but Bush is branded a liar and a scoundrel.

In the meantime, Kerry’s friends and cohorts are trying to compare George W. Bush to Benedict Arnold because he didn’t serve in Vietnam. To grasp how tawdry and hypocritical this is, you simply have to recall that these are the very same people who were attacking Vietnam vets 30 years ago, calling them baby-killers and spitting on them. Now they hate the president because he didn’t go to Nam?!

Can you imagine what they’d call him if he had?

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