Art and commentary by Kimberly Harris

Posts tagged ‘Mitt Romney’

The Debate

A modern interpretation of Eugene Field’s iconic poem “The Duel” about the fateful clash between the Gingham Dog and the Calico Cat who had a terrible spat and ate each other up

Canine Bark Obama prepares to debate feline Kitt Romney

Fierce adversaries Kitt Romney and Bark Obama prepare to confront each other in the first presidential debate on domestic policy

It was high noon in the Colorado mountains high
The fateful hour of debate dreweth nigh
The crowd grew silent anticipating the drama
As fearless Kitt Romney and bold Bark Obama
Side by side at their podiums stood
Praying to avoid gaffes, knock on wood

(“The old Dutch clock and the Chinese plate
Were on site to watch this much-anticipated debate
They two were among the first to see the drama unfold
The Plate winced as Kitt sized up Bark with eyes ice-cold
The Clock shuddered as Bark assessed Kitt with a look most callous
Each candidate was determined to emerge victorious
“No good will come of this,” said the old Dutch clock, looking perturbed
“I foresee a very bad ending,” the Chinese plate all but concurred)

One was a follower of the grey Pachyderm,
Pledged to limit his opponent to a single term
The incumbent was a devoted disciple of the Donkey
Flatly opposed to the vision of that feline Romney

Prominent legislators had coached the two
Briefing them on the issues with much ado
Foreseeing every attack and each defense
And for the practice spared no expense
Senator Portman had stood in for Bark
So Kitt could hone his attacks like a shark
Senator Kerry pretended to be Kitt
Coaching Bark to strike with serious grit

Suddenly the cries from the audience filled the air:
“There’s no difference between this pair”
“All politicians are cut out of the same cheap cloth”
“They should tell us the facts and cut out all the froth”

But a few astute observers were quick to remark
“Look at the cool blue gingham coat sported by Bark”
“And then there’s Kitt’s handsome fur of red calico”
“Either one could be a most formidable foe”

The moderator called the hall to order without delay
“Gentlemen, prepare to confront the issues of the day”
Kitt Romney arched his back in advance of his strike
And with utmost conviction exclaimed into the mike
“Meow, meow, meow!” (“Government has grown far too large!”)
But with ears drawn back and poised to counterattack
Without skipping a beat Bark Obama retorted back
“Arf, arf, arf!!” (“in order to serve us, government needs to be big”)

“So tell us of your achievements, said the moderator”
Accusations and counterclaims swiftly followed from either orator

Bark on the transportation  industry:

“There wasn’t time to design a green aeroplane, so I opted for a fast train”
“I allocated 8 billion for high-speed rail that will grace our nation’s terrain”
“Then I saved the automotive industry from a calamity most feared”
“Graced them with cash with a little help from Ben of the Beard”
“My injection of loot inspired them to create the Chevy Volt”
“A person who would drive any other car is none less than a dolt”

Kitt’s reply:

“You messed with the market and now look at what you have wrought”
“You have spawned a fleet of cars that nobody has bought”
“Volt, Tesla and Leaf all sit in a dealer’s lot as was widely feared”
“In spite of huge rebates, courtesy of your Man with the Beard”
“If that wasn’t enough, you gave half a billion to Fisker-Valmet”
“For an electric sports car to be built in Finland, to our dismay”


Kitt on stimulus

“Your stimulus program had no lasting effects”
“You fleeced the taxpayers with your imprudent projects”
“Solyndra was a dismal failure that squandered half a billion”
“Under your watch the national debt increased by 5 trillion”
“There were no shovel-ready jobs and the money benefited your cronies”
“The country would have done better at the track betting on the ponies”

Bark’s reply:

“I created 4 million jobs by doing things my way”
“$787 million, I mean billion, was a small price to pay”
“The fiscal multiplier is certainly bound to be greater than one”
“In fact GDP is growing so fast that I’m sure I hit a home run”
“There is no need to be concerned about all the spending”
“We are backed by the full faith and credit of Beijing”


Bark on Bain Capital:

“When you were the heartless steward at Bain”
“It is well known that you inflicted considerable pain”
“You and Goldman Sachs cynically used equity extraction”
“To drain the lifeblood from firms for your own gratification”
“You closed factories all the way from Hawaii to Maine”
“And offshored thousands of jobs for your personal gain”

Kitt’s reply:

“You may call me many a name, but a vulture I’m not”
“I saved many a noble brand from ruin or rot”
“If you sleep on a mattress it is most probably a Sealy”
“Your favorite golf clubs came from Sports Authority”
“And that pizza you had for lunch, it’s from Domino’s
“And your laptop was bought at Staples, or was that Joe’s?”


Bark on animal cruelty:

“You strapped your family pet to the top of your sedan”
“You could not find room inside amongst your clan”
“He howled out in terror with the most woeful woof”
“Then poor Seamus panicked and soiled the roof”

Kitt’s reply:

“You shamelessly dined on your faithful four-legged friend”
“In a heartless move that is hard to comprehend”
“You stewed him in sambal sauce and garnished him with greens”
“And then you enjoyed a smoke after they took away his remains”


Suddenly, Bark blurted out:
“I’m not taking any more abuse from you! That’s it!”
“This is the final straw! I’ve had it too!” echoed Kitt

They leapt and charged towards each other with pent-up emotion
Their fangs bared and their claws poised in the angriest fashion
The podiums crashed to the floor with a deafening wham
And the air soon filled with shreds of calico and gingham
It was a truly terrifying sight to behold such a vicious row
The audience rushed to the door with the moderator in tow

Feline Kitt Romney and canine Bark Obama are fighting furiously

After trading insults for most of the debate, a furious fight breaks out between Kitt Romney and Bark Obama

When the janitor arrived late that night
There was little evidence of that epic fight
The dust had settled and the folks were gone
So he stood up the chairs and tidied up until dawn
But as he prepared to go home for some well-earned rest
He was confronted by a crowd of reporters, all well-dressed.

“What became of the debating candidates?” they all asked in chorus.
“We can’t seem to find them anywhere. Do you have a scoop for us?”
The janitor replied politely as he offered them a chair:
“Those quarrelsome two? I have seen neither hide nor hair of that pair”
“But I do know there was a fierce fight in this hall”
“And I did sweep up a tad of fur, as I recall”
“But no siree, I assumed that they both went home to bed”
But the reporters knew better, so the evening news headline read:

Janitor eyewitness states: “There wasn’t a shred of material evidence left!”

(The old Dutch clock and the Chinese plate
Both confirm this was no mere stalemate
Bark ate Kitt and Kitt ate Bark, no question
Tragically ending their ferocious debating session)


Illustration by Kim Harris
Story by Don Rudisuhle

GOP Kielbasa Express Rolls Into Tampa

Romney and Ryan arrive in Tampa in a giant sausage car

As the storm subsides, Mitt Romney, Paul Ryan and Seamus ride their homemade Kielbasa-Mobile into Tampa just in time to gavel open the 2012 Republican Convention

With the annoyance of Hurricane Isaac fading behind them, Republicans from far and wide are converging on Tampa, Florida to rally for their candidates and champion their proposed agenda for the country.

In order to draw attention to President Obama’s divisive policies, party strategists decided to revive the “E Pluribus Unum” motto to underscore the party’s commitment to diversity while at the same bringing all factions of the country together to strive towards a common goal of jobs and prosperity. “Out of many, one?” –Rep. Ryan immediately seized upon the expression clamoring “That’s just how sausage is made!” As an avid hunter and a member of Congress, Rep. Ryan is no stranger to the intricacies of making sausages. In his home state of Wisconsin, his prowess in making kielbasa is undisputed among fellow Cheeseheads.

Furthermore, since Rep. Ryan was once a salesman for Oscar Mayer in Minnesota, he has valuable experience with selling the sausage concept without disclosing too many details as to what went into its making, thus putting him in a strong position to articulate the Republican message on the convention floor.

In a moment of inspiration, Rep. Ryan suggested to his running mate that they rent the Weinermobile to ride into Tampa in a parade that will signal the official beginning of the Republican National Convention. Gov. Romney concurred that the imagery of a giant sausage coursing the streets of Tampa would give the campaign a boost and energize their supporters.

There was a problem, though. Among their many campaign themes was “Build America by buying American” and this gave rise to some concerns regarding potential criticism associated with riding in a vehicle built on an Isuzu chassis manufactured overseas in Japan, Gov. Romney decided against using the official Weinermobile, this in spite of his Rep. Ryan’s proficiency in its operation acquired during his college years.

So, in order to demonstrate their unshakable commitment to financial austerity and responsible spending, the duo agreed to build a custom vehicle using a vintage 1950 Plymouth Special Deluxe 4 Door Sedan that Gov. Romney found in an abandoned barn in western Massachusetts. The two did it all by themselves in their spare time, and without government help.

Seamus reluctantly agreed to accompany his owner on the jaunt in order to refute allegations of abuse and demonstrate for once and for all that he enjoys riding in a kennel on top of a vehicle. This cooperation was predicated on an understanding that he would be rewarded afterwards with one of Rep. Ryan’s tasty homemade kielbasa sausages.

The principle of lower taxes is going to be met with universal acclaim. Nevertheless, the two candidates face numerous daunting obstacles in selling their programs to the electorate, such as widespread public skepticism regarding the viability of devolving Medicaid to the states in the form of block grants that would be conveyed to insolvent spendthrift states like California, Illinois, Michigan, Nevada and New Jersey. What’s more, Rep Ryan’s bold plan for privatizing Medicare has many older Americans wondering if they are going to be on the receiving end of the sausage.

Let the good times roll!

Illustration by Kim Harris
Story by Don Rudisuhle

Santorum Agonistes

Senator Santorum is collapsing the columns on the Philistinocrats

In happier times using what trivial weapon came to hand, the jaw of an ass, his sword of bone, a thousand foreskins fell in the strongholds of Iowa, Minnesota, Colorado and Missouri.

Or do my eyes misrepresent? Can this be he?
That heroic, that renowned,
Irresistible Santorum whom, unfunded,
No strength of man, or fiercest pundit, could withstand;
Who tore the Mitt as the Mitt tears the Newt;
Ran on embattled PACs flush with cash,
And, cashless himself,
Made donations ineffective, useless the gesture
Of brazen jabs and negative ads, all deflected
By Hannityean tempered prose and vest of wool,

Yet stay; let me not rashly call in doubt
Poll predictions. What if all foretold
Had been fulfilled but through mine own default?
Whom have I to complain of but myself,
Who this high gift of delegates committed to me,
In what part lodged, how easily bereft me,
Under the seal of bloggers could not keep,

He speaks: let us draw nigh. Matchless in might,
The glory late of Senate seat now the grief!
We come, thy friends and neighbours not unknown.
David Limbaugh, Michelle Malkin and Phyllis Schlafly,
To visit or bewail thee; or, if better,
Counsel or consolation we may bring,
Salve to thy sores: apt words have power to spin
The tumours of a troubled mind,
And are as balm to festered egos,

Your coming, friends, revives me; for I learn
Now of my own experience, not by talk radio,
How counterfeit a coin they are who “supporters”
Bear in their contributions (of the most
I would be understood). In prosperous primaries
They swarm, but in adverse withdraw their purse,
Not to be found, though sought. Ye see, O friends,
How many evils have enclosed me round;
Yet that which was the worst now least afflicts me,

Tax not divine disposal. Wisest politicians
Have erred, and by bad moderators been deceived;
And shall again, pretend they ne’er so wise.
Deject not, then, so overmuch thyself,
Who hast of sorrow thy full load besides.
Yet, truth to say, you still have a great career at Fox.

Don’t understand this? We don’t understand Milton either…

Illustration by Kim Harris
Story by Don Rudisuhle

Sledding Towards the Palmetto Primary

The six republican candidates are sledding down a steep hill

And what rough crew, their hour come round at last, sleds towards the Palmetto State to face the electorate?

Eager to escape the punishing northeast weather, the Republican primary contestants suspended their jousting and agreed to disagree for a day or two while traveling to the venue that will be hosting their next confrontation. All of the surviving six were concerned about their dwindling campaign coffers, so they chipped in on the rental of a sled that will carry them most of the way to South Carolina. With the forecast calling for snow in the Adirondacks and all up and down the Appalachians, the six should be able sled most of the way to the balmy lowlands of the Palmetto State just in time for Saturday’s debate in Charleston.

Mitt Romney is leading the pack with Newt Gingrich close behind nipping at his heels. Ron Paul, always on the fringe of the mainstream, chose to travel on an inner tube so that he could remain independent from the rest of the group. He is struggling to hold his own against the leaders, and is hoping for a palmetto putsch to trounce his rivals. Huntsman and Perry are hanging on for dear life, and fear they could share the fate of their recently fallen rival, Michele Bachmann.

One can only wonder if debate fatigue has set in among the electorate after so many acrimonious encounters–twenty thus far since May of last year! Seven debates in January alone! Who will watch all of them? Next Saturday’s debate is competing for a time slot with reruns of “Seinfeld.” Which comedy will the viewers opt for?

Illustration by Kim Harris
Story by Don Rudisuhle

Contested Caucus Claims its First Cat Casualty

The six remaining political cats are sitting on a fence

Six surviving cats are sitting on a fence while their fallen colleague takes up residence in a nearby trash can

The results for Iowa are in! Five candidates underperformed and two exceeded expectations. There was one casualty as a result of this highly contested contest. Today, Michele Bachmann announced that she was withdrawing from the race after failing to meet even the modest expectations in the various polls. This leaves six cats standing.

The outcome was as follows:

Results of the 2012 Iowa Causus

The poll figures cited reflect the composite of multiple polls published by Real Clear Politics on the day prior to the election. Jon Huntsman did not campaign in Iowa. Was Rick Santorum’s 8-point surge for real or was it just a dead cat bounce??

Campaigning Cats Claw for Position

Seven political cats are sitting on a fence

Seven contentious cats are sitting on a fence in tenuous harmony as they anxiously await the outcome of the first rounds of primary polling.

Well, the every-four-years circus is in full swing again. Crazy cats, cool cats, conquering cats, chattering cats, controlling cats, climbing cats, conservative cats, candid cats, clever cats, cranky cats, championing cats, confusing cats, challenging cats, conversant cats, cognizant cats, contentious cats, cautious cats, canvassing cats, and poll-cats are all clawing their way towards the top of the heap to claim the coveted catnip, the Republican nomination for the presidency of the United States.

Leading the clamoring clowder of cats are MichelleCat, NewtCat, JonCat, RonCat, PerryCat, MittCat and RickCat. Other felicitous felines like TrumpCat and GaryCat lay in waiting to see the outcome of the fray, ready to pounce at a moment’s notice.

There are no less than 53 contests between January 3rd and June 26th during which countless angry hisses will be exchanged and much fur will fly.  It is now high noon in the State of Iowa, and with an unprecedented 41% of undecided voters, no one knows who will prevail. Which cat will begin to gradually fade into oblivion, like the Cheshire Cat of childhood lore? Could the outcome possibly be similar to the legendary duel between the Gingham Dog and Calico Cat, who simply ate each other up, leaving no trace of either adversary?

Only time will tell…

Illustration by Kim Harris
Story by Don Rudisuhle

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