There are times in our lives when events conspire to make us stop and thump our heads against our desks in astonishment. People (not you savvy “Invisible Primary” blog readers, of course, but some people) make incautious errors, some people are socially tone deaf, and then there are those who are straight-up dum-dum, ass-hat nincompoops. According to no less a scholar than Big Bird, everyone makes mistakes: Your sister and your brother and your dad and mother too. Yes, everybody screws up… but mistakes are enormously fun to watch in the political realm.
Politics is a fecund field for the accident-prone, if only because of the spotlights and cameras that shine upon those who crave elected office. This means that a verbal slip-up or a miscalculation has the propensity for wide coverage. This is the force of the modern media, and it is the gift that brings us to today’s IP Media coverage: The unforced error. Several things hit my IP radar this week which made me bonk my head against my desk and yell “No! NO! Don’t do that!” to my computer screen. And so what I expect to be a long-running series, the first installment of what I will call “No! NO! Don’t do that!” (NNDDT! for short)
Our first NNDDT! Award goes to… former First Lady Barbara Bush.
I am not picking on Babs herself (she looks terrific, by the way) so don’t jump on me for carping on a civilian. Instead, I am giving the NNDDT! award for her comments about her son Jeb’s possible presidential run (See, Dave, I got there! Sometimes it just takes me a chatty while, as you well know). When asked by The Today Show’s Matt Lauer if she would like to see Jeb run, Barbara responded: “He's by far the best qualified man, but no. I really don't. I think it's a great country. There are a lot of great families. It's not just four families or whatever. There are other people out there that are very qualified. We have had enough Bushes.” I totally get that she’s a mom and she’s talking about another son going for another grueling campaign season and I appreciate her candor and her moxie and all that jazz… but the magic of editing just opened the door to every. single. oppo ad of 2016 featuring the quote: “There are other people out there that are very qualified. We have had enough Bushes.”
Mrs. Bush: NNDDT!
Or at least send Jebby a fruit basket with an apology note.
Moving right along, the second NNDDT! Award goes to… Sen. Rand Paul for taking the horrific Boston bombing and using it to throw a torx wrench into the nascent debate on immigration. The so-called “Gang of Eight,” which included IP fave Marco Rubio, had just unwrapped their immigration proposal when Sen. Paul sent a public letter
to the media to Senate Majority
Leader Harry Reid urging: “We should not proceed until we
understand the specific failures of our immigration system.” Good gravy. It makes me want to scream at my colleagues like a zealot.
No wait – that was the two Chucks (Schumer and Grassley) over the head of poor Pat Leahy. Never mind. Anyway, it’s silly and you’re doing this to get
attention and being obstructionist is no way to position yourself as a potential
Free World Leader, so NNDDT!
The next NNDDT! Award goes to… my man, former NY Congressman Anthony Weiner. Who went back on Twitter. And says there might be more saucy pictures of him out there. And he’s back on Twitter – I think this bears repeating. I suppose he might be trying to do it and get it out of the way, but this is no way to mount a comeback. Ha! OK, not enough? How’s this, from Stephen Colbert: “Weiner is ready to stick it back in. And that takes balls.” Better? Anyway, Weiner is going to face some stiff competition. And I suspect he’s going down. OK, I’m done now. But all of that said, he’s BACK ON TWITTER! Tweeting is not a necessity, by any means, not even a must for public office. And for Weiner, who had to resign from office BECAUSE OF TWITTER I suspect it is fraught with possible problems. I just cannot figure out what the heck he is doing, besides launching an effort to swell his support by intensifying and surging his popularity. OK, NOW I’m done. Is it hot in here?
Anywho: Anthony Weiner, put down the phone and as for Twitter…NNDDT!
The last NNDDT! Award goes to… former S.C. Gov. Mark Sanford who, after last week’s revelation that he broke into his ex-wife’s house, did the next most unconscionable thing: He took out an ad in the Charleston Post & Courier newspaper which began with the words: “It’s been a rough week.” Yes, Governor. It has. For the people for Boston and the people of Texas who had to suffer through real tragedy. And now you have just reminded people that you broke into your ex-wife’s house. Remember her? The one you cheated on with your current fiancé? Tone deaf. Senseless. Bonk, bonk, bonk. My head hurts too much to even tell you not to do that. Just please go away.
So those are the first of the NNDDT Awards. I suspect more will be on the way as our IP candidates hog the spotlight and step on their own… toes. Nominations will be accepted at this blog on a rolling basis. First come, first served.
OK. Now I’m done.