Friday, September 08, 2006

There's Gonna Be a Girlfight

I love political debates. I have loved them since I was a kid. In our modern political times, it's the closest we come to seeing a candidate as he/she actually is, and not as the mouthpiece in a political ad between segments of the evening news. My mother bred this political interest in me at a young age-- I got a firsthand look at how elections work when I was in junior high school because she had to be elected to get her job. While she didn't have to debate anyone, she did a lot of door-to-door visits (amazing from my shy mom), and I licked a lot of envelopes. I remembered waiting for the election results to come across the local cable access channel. It was all very exciting.

Last night, as I had caffeine withdrawal on my couch (damn you, fifty-one cent coffee!) I waited for Access Hollywood to come on, but instead I got the Democratic Primary debate. Since I only get channel 7 and channel 5, I decided to sit and watch. Full disclosure time-- I don't vote in Massachusetts. I'm registered in Rhode Island still, and I'm seriously debating taking Tuesday off to drive down, affiliate as a Republican (I know, it makes me feel dirty), vote for Chafee, disaffiliate from the Republican Party as fast as possible (I can imagine the memoir, My Twenty Minutes as a Republican) and come back up. I hate Steve Laffey with a passion. Everybody loves a gay basher for Senate! Asshole.

Enough about Rhode Island. Watching the gubernatorial debate for Massachusetts Democrats was hilarious. First, the physical disparity between the candidates was comedy gold. Chris Gabrieli stood about two and a half feet taller than Tom Reilly and Deval Patrick, with a completely goofy expression on his face. With the three podiums next to each other, it looked like an SNL version of Celebrity Jeopardy. Tom Reilly twitched like a rabid dog on a leash, and Deval Patrick stood smoothly at his podium.

(I have an image to put here, but Photobucket is a ho.)

KCee asked me this morning, as I recounted the hilarity of Tom Reilly jumping all over Chris Gabrieli like the rabid dog who gnawed through his chain and attacked his owner and Deval Patrick taking pages from the Bill Clinton Book of Smooth, who I'd vote for in the primary. Honestly? I don't know. I know I would not vote for Gabrieli-- he lost me in his first answer when he said, "Listen, the economy is important to Massachusetts..." because my ex-boyfriend would always say "Look" or "Listen" in that patronizing manner and it drives me batshit insane to hear someone say that to this day. I'm paying attention-- convince me that you have a valid point, don't slam it down my throat. I was also unimpressed with Gabrieli's insistence that UMass campuses don't deserve as much funding for research as already-prominent schools like Harvard and MIT do. I think it was a miscommunication, but Gabrieli bellowing "What's wrong with Harvard?" while Reilly yipped about UMass deserving as much funding as any other school in the state and Patrick smoothly trying to smooth things over made all of them look bad. Of course UMass deserves more funding. State schools are rapidly becoming a joke, and they should be invested in to keep kids in-state. (You hear me, URI? Your creative writing program needs some serious help!) I guess my pretend vote is a toss-up between Reilly, who looked like an asshole, and Patrick, who strikes me as too smooth. I bought it from Clinton, but I'm not sure if I buy it from Patrick. I think he looked the best out of the trio of candidates, but after that catfight, that's not saying much.

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