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After rigorous pushback across multiple blogs, tweets, and sundry other outlets over its editorial suggesting a Romney-Bloomberg independent ticket (pejoratively nicknamed across the blogosphere variously as “The Fun-Sucker Proxy,” “The Oh God, N0oooooo!!!,” “Bloom-ney,” and “What fresh hell is this?” ticket), The Bulwark has retracted the original article and its endorsement and instead issued a revised piece that editor-in-chief Jonathan Last has called “what America well and truly deserves.”
With the democratic-socialist Bernie Sanders now the Democratic frontrunner and the political arsonist Donald Trump as the Republican incumbent, there is a yawning chasm that has never before existed in American politics. By retreating to their poles, our two major parties have left tens of millions of independents and moderate Democrats and Republicans unrepresented. Satan’s entrance into the presidential race wouldn’t just give the vital center of the electorate a home — it would stand a chance to break the system entirely.
I’m hard-pressed to tell whether Mr. Last made this endorsement sarcastically out of anger at the pushback on the original endorsement, or if this is, in fact serious. The case made is certainly a novel one.
The last major third-party run was in 1992, when Ross Perot won 19 percent of the vote—and he accomplished this while running against two party centrists, in Bill Clinton and George H.W. Bush. Against two polarizing fringe candidates with no claim to the middle of American politics, and with demonic hoards at his disposal, we have no idea what Satan’s electoral ceiling might be, but I’m sure is damned high.
Perhaps Mr. Last has forgotten that Perot’s quixotic runs in ’92 and ’96 got us eight solid years of Bill Clinton. But I think The Bulwark has moved solidly into the “Anyone, anyone at all, but Trump” phase of its existence. The editorial goes on:
In America the odds are extraordinarily long for any independent candidate. That is largely a problem of access and funding, which both the Democrat and Republican parties have been unified in blocking. But this is fundamentally not a problem for the prince of darkness, who can cash in favors from all the world’s wealthy for support, and whose legions of damned souls will be doomed for eternity to canvas every neighborhood in existence, 24/7. A leaked canvasser training manual shows satan’s clever campaign insights on soul possession and necromancy, which should serve well in Chicago.
I’d be tempted to suggest that this was a long-shot candidacy, America being a two-party system and all, but The Bulwark has even that covered:
But even if Satan didn’t win, his prospective candidacy is already polling above Trump, and he could bring enough public pressure to force the parties to give up their duopoly of citizens, and all the souls they command, and realize that until the possibility for a viable third party exists, we’re going to keep being forced to choose between unpopular candidates beholden to their party’s extremes. The prince of darkness would upend the entire corrupt paradigm, and serve the added goal of never again needing to contemplate Donald Trump’s name on any ticket.
We also could solve that “problem” by way of a nuclear holocaust, a massive plague, a massive plague of locusts, or a massive plague of plagued radioactive nuclear locusts, but it’s hard to see the upside of any of those solutions save that we might also see the emergence of Marvel’s next superhero, Locust Man (whose powers include the ability to devour entire fields of crops in seconds — and whose archnemesis is Monsanto Man). Honestly, their original suggestion of Bloomers and Rommers isn’t sounding quite as bad at the moment. I cannot help but think they’re scraping the bottom of the barrel. The madness continues:
Another barrier to entry that independent candidates face is they do not have the name recognition that affiliating with a major party grants.
Satan would solve both of these problems, being recognized the world over. As the puppet master of most parties’ nominees for president since at least 1932, satan’s name recognition is already high. He has the credibility and trust of both Trump-hating Republicans, who see him as a sane alternative to the insanity of the president’s Twitter storm, and of the Silicon Valley capitalists, who are terrified of Bernie’s socialist utopia. He could easily cross the 105% percent polling threshold when Chicago is fully counted, and when Portland unlocks its van full of sealed ballots it just found.
Well, if name recognition is what they’re after, why not Jennifer Lopez? We could have the first inaugural pole dance routine out of that nomination at least, and I think she would meet most other Bulwark criteria already laid out above: Not Trump, Not Trump, and Not Trump. And I’m pretty sure she’s not the princess of darkness, even if she does have a rep as a prima donna. Well, it seems the Bulwark is truly looking for a “unity” candidate here, and they conclude their pitch as follows:
Think about that for a moment: satan has shown consistent and rigorous bipartisan appeal, and an ability to work with all sides. He is truly beyond any party affiliation, he has demonstrated that he has the ability to build big tent coalitions across partisan divides.
The same could be said of any natural disaster. I tried reaching out to the editors of The Bulwark to see if they were truly serious in their endorsement, asking if, in the face of the actual anti-Christ, they might not reconsider, hold their nose, and vote for the Orange Toupee man, just this once. Their response? “Not a chance in Hell.”Published in