Why Wait till November? Get Your 2006 Congressional Election Results Now!
A Guest Post By, Mark W. Bradley
I like to think of myself as a trusting person, one who would never dream of assigning nefarious motives to even the most casual and untested of my acquaintances. As a result, I believe I tend to inspire similar confidence on the part of others. Just recently, in fact, I was personally contacted (via e-mail) by the wife of a Nigerian diplomat caught in the middle of an African coup de tat. Even though we’ve never actually met, she generously invited me to assist her in a complex monetary transaction involving several international banks, billions in foreign currency, a long-lost diamond mine, and the temporary use of my American Express Card. Yes, I do get a warm feeling just knowing how much this poor distressed woman appreciates my help, but believe me, the $2,500 finders fee I’ll be getting in the mail next year really sweetens the deal from my perspective!
Likewise, when my new postman asked me the other day for one of my house keys so he could save me the trouble of having to feed my goldfish, I said “Why not?” After all, I was already planning to have one made for Lester, the 37 year-old man down the street who mows my lawn, raises snakes, and lives with his parents, so how much more expensive could two keys be than one?
You see, Joe (that’s my new mailman) was just explaining to me how the U.S. Postal Service recently became a subsidiary of the Department of Homeland Security, and how, since he’s got to be at my house to deliver the mail anyway, it’s really no extra trouble for him to come in and inspect my personal computer on a daily basis while I’m at work. That way, we can both make sure that al Qaeda, Greenpeace, and the Quakers aren’t spying on me, which takes a huge load off my mind. Now, when I arrive home every day at 5:30, my fish have been fed, my computer’s been checked for suspicious activity, and every piece of my mail has been neatly arranged on the dining room table, even the ones accidentally steamed open and resealed with duct tape. I tell you, that Joe’s a real Godsend; I don’t know what I’d do without him…
Anyway, having a full-service postman like Joe not only saves me the inconvenience of receiving mail from the wrong people, it also prevents me from getting my mail at the wrong time. Let me explain.
The other day, I got a letter from an activist organization I joined back in 2000, a group by the name of moveonpleasetheresnothingtoseehere.org. That’s not unusual, of course, since I get letters and e-mails from all kinds of political parties on a regular basis asking for money to fight corruption and dishonesty in government. I always send them cash in the mail (you know, whatever I can afford) and I always tell Joe, so he can make sure the money gets to where it’s supposed to.) The strange thing about this particular letter is that it was postmarked November 13, 2006. That’s right, I got a letter from the future! My hands were literally shaking with excitement as I ripped open the envelope and read the following message…
Dear moveonpleasetheresnothingtoseehere.org member:
Given the generally disappointing results of last week’s 2006 midterm elections, we recognize that the natural inclination on the part of Democratic voters is to indulge in a sort of helpless malaise and perhaps even a fatalistic form of depression. Some of us may sink into thoughts of “Why do I even bother to participate in the system?” Still others will succumb to wild conspiracy theories and unfounded speculation about the supposed “unreliability” of the machines that count our votes. All of this is to be expected, of course. But we must not let this sort of “sour grapes” defeatist thinking prevent us from participating in the important work that now confronts us. It’s time for all of us progressives to put the disappointments of the past behind us where they belong, and resume the hard work of building a better future for ourselves and our children.
Regarding how we Democrats somehow came up short again on November 7, there appears to have been no single cause for the spate of defeats sustained by Democratic candidates in Congressional and Senate campaigns around the country. Rather, it seems to have been the result of an unfortunate convergence of utterly inexplicable random events. And while the political pundits are sure to be picking over the bones of this election for months (if not years), we here at moveonpleasetheresnothingtoseehere.org have some preliminary observations to share with you regarding a few of the more controversial races.
In Pennsylvania, for instance, where late tracking polls showed incumbent Republican Senator Rick Sanctimonium trailing his democratic opponent by a whopping 26% (and election day exit polling had him down by an even larger 32%), he somehow managed to squeak out a narrow 53 to 47 percent victory. Republican strategist Karl Bove (who is expected to be indicted any day now on four counts of murder and kidnapping for his part in a daring daylight robbery of Fort Knox back in June) attributes this surprise result to an under-the-radar stealth campaign which turned out an impressive 17 million previously unregistered Amish voters in Lancaster County. Bove especially credits Senator Sanctimonium’s decision to stimulate Amish participation by means of a well-publicized ballot initiative proposing that marriage be defined as a union between “one human being and other”, thereby preventing members of different species from entering into holy matrimony in the State of Pennsylvania.
In Northern California, Republican Congressmen Don Lung-rend and Jan Loo-diddle had been thought to be particularly vulnerable this election cycle, due to the release of an incriminating videotape depicting the two of them at the National Archives after hours, tearing original copies of the Constitution and Bill of Rights into thin strips and using them to construct a papier mache pinata shaped like the Statue of Liberty and filled with gold Krugerrands for use at a GOP fundraiser. While these difficulties did necessitate their having to dig deeply into their personal campaign war chests for actual campaign expenditures, in the end they easily managed to outspend their opponents by a factor of 16 to 1. In fact, each of them was able to purchase an additional 75 “Ebony Edition” Diebold touch screen vote tabulators and present them to California Secretary of State Bruce MacPhearphactor, saving the taxpayers of the state a hefty 12.6 million dollars. These machines were subsequently distributed by the Secretary of State in the African-American neighborhoods where they were most needed: Inglewood, Compton, and the Fillmore District of San Francisco. For Republican Congressional candidates up and down the state (including Lung-rend and Loo-Diddle), the margin of victory was a consistently narrow (but decisive) 53% to 47% .
In a related story, Governor Arnold Schwarzenherzen staged one of the most remarkable political comebacks in recent history last Tuesday. Having thoroughly alienated California nurses, teachers, firemen, police officers, college students, vegetarians, Catholics, fast-food restaurant employees, Jews, teamsters, immigrants, disabled pet-owners, and most people named “Bob”, the Governor was not expected to bounce back from his single-digit approval ratings. Here again, Karl Bove was a significant factor, as he was able to tap into another “sleeper” population of Republican voters, in this case a subterranean colony of semi-blind, root-devouring Mormon mole-people living in a network of tunnels underneath the Mojave Desert. Even so, according to early returns, Schwarzenherzen looked as though he would still come up short, when a late surge in absentee ballots from Disneyland’s Toon Town brought the Governor a razor-thin edge in the final tally: 51% to 49% . (Correction - an eleventh hour recount requested by the Democratic Gubernatorial candidate resulted in an additional two percent shift toward the incumbent. Schwarzenherzen’s official totals now reflect a 53% to 47% win for the Governor.)
But perhaps the most disappointing results of the night for Democrats occurred in Florida, where former Secretary of State Slatherine Bareass defeated both the Republican and Democratic candidates with her block of 53 votes to their combined total of 47 (all of the other 8,000,000 voters in the state having been purged from the rolls as convicted felons by Mistress Bareass’s good friends at Choice Point). Even now, our crack team of election lawyers is engaged in the process of checking those 8 million names to see if any of them were deleted from the voter rolls mistakenly. We expect a full report from them sometime in late March, 2007.
In the meantime, we here at moveonpleasetheresnothingtoseehere.org desperately need your financial contributions to keep up our valiant efforts to hold the Republican controlled Congress, White House and Supreme Court responsible for its reprehensible policies. So please send a check for whatever you can afford (or cash, if Joe is your mailman). Thank you for your unwavering support.
No sooner had I finished perusing this remarkable document than my good friend Joe arrived with a new carton of fish food. He apologized for the mix up, took the letter from me immediately, resealed it in its original envelope, and told me that as soon as he got back to the Post Office he would deposit it safely in the Homeland Security Time-Travel Machine where it would be temporarily dematerialized back into the time-space continuum. Thank God for Joe…
Mark W. Bradley is a schoolteacher and political satirist in Sacramento, California. He can be contacted at: firstname.lastname@example.org.