I am hearing a lot of people wondering how on earth the Republicans could have ended up with Donald Trump as their presidential nominee. Well, as shocking as it may seem, he may actually have been a reasonably sane choice when you review the other contenders at the beginning of the process. Remember these?
JEB BUSH – Raised and spent more money than all the other candidates combined, but even the Republicans couldn’t stomach yet another Bush. Suggested health insurance wasn’t necessary in an age of Apple watches; that economic woes would be solved by people working longer hours; that evolution should be taken off the science curriculum; and that Christian prisons would solve America’s crime problem.
RICK SANTORUM – Opposed to abortion and all forms of contraception, even among married couples. Believes a child conceived from rape is a gift from God. Compared homosexuality to ‘man-on-dog‘ sex. Accuses radical feminists of promoting the idea that it is socially affirming for women to work outside the home.
RICK PERRY – Ran a summer hunting camp that he called Niggerhead. Likes bragging about shooting coyotes while jogging. Indignant about gays being able to serve openly in the military. Described by a fellow Republican governor as “like GW Bush, but without the brains“.
BOBBY JINDAL – Originally a Hindu, but converted to Catholicism. Attempted to eliminate all personal and corporate taxes in Louisiana, bankrupting the the state finances in the process. Encouraged the teaching of creationism as part of the science curriculum. Believes swathes of Europe are no-go areas that are under sharia law.
CARLY FIORINA – Sacked as CEO of Hewlett-Packard after halving the value of the corporation. Equates worries over climate change to worrying about the weather. Describes having seen videos of fully forms foetuses, alive and kicking, having their brains removed, but cannot produce said video.
DR RAND PAUL – Opthalmologist who is opposed to government ‘interference’ in just about anything (except abortion, of course), but most certainly with regards to guns, health, poverty, environment etc.
MIKE HUCKABEE – Guitar-playing radio preacher, who doesn’t do math, but majors in miracles! Believes that North Koreans have more freedom and that lefties are seeking to criminalise Christianity. Thinks gun control means hitting your target and that asking him to accept gay marriage is comparable to asking a Jewish deli to serve ‘bacon-wrapped shrimp’.
JOHN KASICH – A Fox News presenter and anchor (I said ‘anchor’!), with the dodgy network and NY Times behind him. Ticks all the usual boxes: anti-union, anti-tax, pro-guns, pro-death penalty, anti-immigrant, anti-abortion, pro-creationism, anti-environment, pro-privatisation. Believes that god has given him a special appreciation of other people’s problems.
DR BEN CARSON – Neurosurgeon who believes that, but for Fox News and Christian conservative radio, the USA would be Cuba. Apparently has inside knowledge of Chinese troops in Syria, and has revealed that the pyramids were actually huge grain silos. Has suggested that Darwin was possessed by Satan in order to undermine God’s word. Neurosurgery? I think I’ll do it myself thanks.
MARCO RUBIO – Senator who thinks the Senate is a waste of his time and has the worst attendance record. Typical hardliner again. On climate change, he shrugs and declares that you can’t change the weather. Proposes eliminating taxes on the rich. Has modest goals; namely ‘Our goal is eternity – the ability to live alongside our Creator for all time’.
TED CRUZ – variously described by colleagues as ‘wacko bird’ (John McCain), ‘jackass’ and ‘Lucifer in the flesh’ (John Boehner). He points to ‘undeniable facts’ such as that ‘the vast majority of criminals are Democrats’ and that the US constitution makes it clear that there is no place in the USA for gays and atheists. He wants to carpet bomb ISIS into oblivion (although not sure what carpet bombing actually means) and make the sand glow in the dark, while at the same time wanting to ‘awaken and energise the body of Christ’.
All this does, at least, make you (relatively) relieved to be British. At least most of our politicians are merely duplicitous, self-serving liars. I’ll take that over this ……. whatever is the most suitable collective noun you can come up with for this lot. I’m favouring ‘blither’.
All together now: