Saturday, October 17, 2015

Zombie Candidates: they lurch clumsily forward with ever-staring eyes – not realizing that they’re dead!

What would you do if this man were to approach you on the street and announce, “I’m Jim Gilmore and I am going to be the next President of the United States”?

You might well think you were being confronted with some poor chap who had taken leave of his senses. But in fact this man, Jim Gilmore is indeed running for president. The fact that you did not recognize his face, nor, probably, his name, is a good indication that this former governor is a zombie candidate. He keeps on going as though his campaign actually had life in it. But it does not.

Lincoln Chafee is another zombie candidate.


Granted it is interesting to have a Democratic Presidential Candidate who was once a Republican Senator, and then an Independent Governor. That, however, is the most interesting thing about Mr. Chafee’s candidacy.

At the recent Democratic debate he described himself as “a block of granite,” and what a block of granite would do were you to plunk it into the deep blue sea is exactly what Mr. Chafee’s candidacy has been doing lately. Given that he seems to be a very decent and sincere man, I take no pleasure in noting this, but it is time for him to let go of his walking corpse of a campaign.

Then there is Bobby Jindal, Governor of Louisiana. His poll numbers started out last spring in the single digit range, but at least that single digit was to the left of the decimal point. Lately he’s been polling at around .8% among Republicans.

One of his most memorable quotes came during a Fox News interview when he said “the Confederate flag is a symbol of my heritage, and that heritage has nothing to do with racism or hate.” But even this little outburst of bigotry failed to help his numbers. 

And let's not forget the T-shirt that his campaign distributed which was emblazoned with the words “Tanned Rested Ready.”

                        Jindal Campaign T-shirt

Still no traction, though it did set some people speculating as to whether Governor Jindal had a much stronger sense of irony than we realized. Apparently not. He is just weird. 

Bobby, we hardly knew ye, but the better we got to know ye, the less presidential ye seemed.

                          Governor Bobby Jindal

Polling at half of Bobby Jindal’s rate is former Governor George Pataki of New York at .4%.

Not sure what he’s thinking. Maybe he’s hoping that if the GOP picks a right-wing fanatic like Ted Cruz, he can offer himself as the perfect running mate – a blue state Republican who seems fairly normal compared to Cruz.

Also polling at about .4% is Lindsay Graham.

Senator Graham is distinguished by his strong message which is clear, decisive and utterly insane. Senator Graham’s main complaint with Obama is that the president has failed to exploit America’s war-waging potential.

“We have the capacity to crank up the combat in Afghanistan and Iraq, plus start a new war in Syria, but what is President Obama doing about this? Nothing!”

Admittedly these are not Senator Grahams’ exact words, but they capture, I think, his message.

“All I'm asking for is just one little teeny weeny boots-on-the-ground war in Syria, no bigger than this, I promise.”

Finally, there’s Rick Santorum. I don’t know what his campaign slogan is, but it should be something like, “Yes, it’s me again.”

                                   Rick Santorum

The response from the Republican electorate seems to be the equivalent of a collective eye roll.

The point is that all of these people, Democrat and Republican alike, should not be cluttering up the landscape with their hopeless dreams. Isn’t it enough that the electoral landscape is already cluttered with the likes of Donald Trump and Ben Carson? Isn’t that in itself sufficiently depressing? For everyone’s sake, would you gentlemen please escort your candidacies to the nearest mausoleum, see them inside, and lock the door. Thank you.