Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Wisconsin PrimaryThis week is Wisconsin Congressional Race week at the news station so what we're doing is inviting all five candidates for three minutes of free air time. We lob the softballs and it's up to the candidates to hit them out of the park.

Our first guest on Monday was Republican candidate Terri McCormick. She entered the studio in a huff, unloading her bag and campaign pamphlets onto her doting assistant. Now, I'm not a political strategist but I seriously doubt if "creepy" wins elections because when her time started she did the Ross Perot thing and answered each question by looking directly into the camera, not only that but she looked into the wrong camera. After her free three-minute-long campaign commercial ended she hopped out of her seat, gathered her belongings and did everything short of running for the exit without thanking a single person.

Next, on Tuesday, we had Democratic candidate Dr. Steve Kagen. Talk about a 180 degree turnaround. When he stepped up to bat he took the time to greet both news anchors and shook the hand of the head meteorologist. On air he came across fabulously, outlining the failures in Iraq, the federal government's clumsiness under the Bush regime and how accountability so desperately needs to be restored in government. Not only that but his manner was less rigid, opting for eye contact with the interviewer instead of awkwardly staring into the camera for a thirty-second answer. The effect was one of genuine warmth as though we, the audience, were watching a budding friendship between he and the interviewer. Afterward he took the time to shake everybody's hand, not treating the floorcrew as though we were a displaced lepar colony. He recognized and treated us like what we were- his base.

Today, we were graced with the presence of Republican congressional hopeful John Gard who was still basking in the glow of Bush's annointing. For the most part he parroted McCormick's neologisms perfectly but with one notable exception. When asked what he would do to protect the country against the threat of terrorism he said we need to do whatever it takes to win which means not taking plays from the ACLU's playbook. You read that right, the ACLU is sinking its fangs deeper and deeper into the neck of lady liberty herself. You might even remember those latte-sipping, hemp-growing, hacky-sacking lefties defended rightwing hatchetman, Rush Limbaugh in West Palm Beach Florida. Screamin' liberal commies each and every one.

It's interesting to compare candidates and see that one is clueless (McCormick), one knows how to play the game (Kagen) and another knows how to play it better (Gard). I'm crossing my fingers hoping Dr. Kagen's concern for the voters will overtake Gard's forced charm. Vote Kagen, it's about time we get a doctor in the house.

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