Parents magazine polled readers about which of the 2008 presidential candidates would make the best babysitter.

It’s something I’ve always pondered when I look at Andrew Jackson or Kinky Friedman. And the relationship between getting unruly third graders to bed on time and getting the House of Representatives to pass your legislation is equally frustrating. It all goes back to relating to the candidate as a person. I remember in the 1992 election hearing that all three candidates, George H. Bush, William J. Clinton and Ross Perot, were left-handed. No matter who lost, I won! I could be confident that the next president would be math-deprived, lessdisslick and smear everything he wrote!

There are always politically incorrect insinuations that women would vote for a woman candidate, for the primary reason that they are both women. Or that blacks would vote for a black candidate, simply because they are black. Of course, they would. Or at least give it serious consideration.

It’s the same with cowboys, vegetarians and paroled felons. It’s natural to want to have someone in office who understands you. What percent of the Mormon vote will candidate Romney receive … 99 percent?

How big a piece of the parasailing electorate did John Kerry garner? How many brush-clearing cedar whacks went for George W. Bush? There have been many bright visionaries who toyed with the idea of running for president, but they registered low on the EMP (empathy) factor. They were hard to empathize with: Ralph Nader, Jesse Ventura, Donald Trump. So the EMP factor cannot be ignored. Given the opportunity to poll candidates, there are several questions I would proffer:


1) Do you consider Miracle Whip and jalapeños essential nutrients in the food pyramid?

2) Do you prefer Copenhagen or Skoal?

3) Do you have any nieces, nephews, cousins or children named after coon dogs … Blue, Jake, Badger or Whoop?

4) Do you Head or Heel?

5) How long ‘til you have to renew your (a) Farm Bureau membership, (b) your subscription to Sports & Field, (c) the warranty on your wife’s 4-by-4 pick-up truck?

6) And finally, do you already own one of my books or CDs?

This last one would show if you were a discriminating reader with a literary bent or were simply into recycling paper. PD