Democrats & Liberals Archives

They're All the Same Guy

Republican voters definitely have a type. Three of the leading Republican candidates, Giuliani, Thompson*, and McCain, have a striking number of noteworthy similarities.

Before I get to the list, let me define what I mean by noteworthy. After all, you can find similarities among any group of people if you look hard enough. My first criterion for making the list is that it has to be relevant to their electability or their ability to serve as President. For example, I don’t care about their shoe size. The other criterion is that there has to be at least one counterexample on the Democratic side. This is to weed out things that are too common among Presidential candidates to be interesting. Being heterosexual, for example. This also blocks the much-used retort, “The Democrats are like that toooo”. I will list some counterexamples if they are not obvious. Finally, following the Republican line on the issues is not noteworthy.

So those are the rules. On to the list!

They’re all white males – In any previous election cycle, this would have been a completely trivial observation. Not any more!

They’re all follically-challenged
– Our last bald President was Gerald Ford. Is it a coincidence that he was the only one in history who wasn’t elected?

They’re all over sixty – John McCain gets extra credit for being seventy.

Democratic counterexamples: Clinton (barely), Obama, Edwards, etc.

They’ve all been diagnosed with cancer – This is the strange one. Do all sixty-something dudes get cancer, or only Republicans?

Democratic counterexamples: I haven’t done any research on this, but I don’t know of any Dems in this category.

They’ve all been divorced

Democratic counterexamples: All of the serious candidates.

They’re all married to women who are at least a decade younger– Thompson gets bonus points for having a spouse with a lot of, er, va-va-voom.

(Speaking of which, guess which Democratic candidate has the hottest wife? Really, guess. Now click here to find out. Hey sweetie, I'm running for President too!)

They’re all perceived as “tough guys” – This is a bit subjective, but I think if you did a Lexis-Nexis search you would find a lot of examples of the media calling these guys “tough”. With the exception of McCain, this means they look tough. McCain really is a badass. The dude still climbs mountains.

Democratic counterexamples: Hillary Clinton, for one.

They all have four-letter first names (or nicknames) – Fits on a button, and sounds kind of macho I suppose.

They’ve all been the “It Candidate” in the GOP at some point
– Again, a bit subjective. I think it fair to say that Giuliani stole McCain’s thunder, and now Thompson seems to be overshadowing Giuliani. Who’s next? Michael Reagan?

As I said, Republicans have a type. Let’s call it the Avuncular** Alpha Male. They’re old***, seemingly tough, have a punchy-sounding name, and want to breed with your lady. Mitt Romney is clearly not an AAM. His philosophy is “Pander first, ask questions later.” One of John McCain's cysts could beat him in a fair fight.

Bonus self-congratulation: We have all seen the stories about how John McCain is broke. I described his problem to a tee almost two years ago (9/05) on this blog, in a post where I listed some candidates who were “extremely unlikely to actually be nominated”:

McCain is a maverick. The vested interests who own the GOP aren't going to support a maverick. You don't shell out hundreds of millions of dollars to buy a loose cannon. That said, he may have a shot as an independent candidate.

I also listed Rudy Giuliani as someone who couldn’t win the nomination. We’ll see...

*(Yeah, I know, Thompson isn’t a candidate. Riiiggght.)

**of, pertaining to, or characteristic of an uncle.

***For the record, I don't use the word "old" as a put down. It is silly how culture keeps coming up with euphemisms for being old. To my mind, that's an insult. If we have to come up with ridiculous ways to say someone is old, there must be something wrong with it. End of rant.

Posted by Woody Mena at July 18, 2007 6:46 AM
Comment #226713

What is there about any of the current Republican presidential candidates to get excited about? Just more of the same old stuff…pander, puff, parade, and kiss the incumbent president’s backside…we don’t need them at all…we need someone who can at least basically use reason instead of “loyalty” or “big oil interests (or pharma)…how about a president who gives more than lip service to the ordinary citizen…

Bush has consistently shown contempt for majority of Americans, and most especially for our kids, who are overseas fighting in his oil war…it’s time we demand the respect we are due and insist on being able to actually have our vote count and our interests and needs be above those of oil, pharma, and other “big contributors”…

This is supposed to be a government OF, BY, and FOR the POEPLE…let’s insist it remain so.

Posted by: Rachel at July 18, 2007 7:44 AM
Comment #226722

A good read Woody.
It’s like 2004 all over again, boring and who cares candidates.
Only its the Republicans in the dream seat this time.

Posted by: kctim at July 18, 2007 9:29 AM
Comment #226723

Hey, you know who else fits these catagories? Bob Dole Do you think this is the default Republican candidate type when they know they can’t win?


Posted by: leatherankh at July 18, 2007 9:31 AM
Comment #226725


Wow, you’re basically right about Dole. What is it with these Republicans?!

I don’t know if he is a tough guy as such, but he’s mean so that’s close enough. And BOB has three letters, but I guess I can say four-or-fewer.

Posted by: Woody Mena at July 18, 2007 10:01 AM
Comment #226729

“Who’s next?”


Posted by: KansasDem at July 18, 2007 10:52 AM
Comment #226739


While our political philosophies may be in direct opposites of each other, we do agree about one thing.

“For the record, I don’t use the word “old” as a put down. It is silly how culture keeps coming up with euphemisms for being old. To my mind, that’s an insult.”

I went back to college when I was 41, and was labeled a “Non-traditional student”.

I thought about this for a moment and was insulted right away.

What is a “Non-traditional student”?

Well, anyone who is not male/female 17-23 years old.

“Non-traditional students” would include Homo Pithicarus, Billy Goats and two headed Elvis Clones form the planet Zork.

So, as a result, any time a student or professor called me a “Non-traditional student”, I corrected them by using the term by which I would like to be referred.

“Old guy going back to school”.

End of story.

Posted by: Jim T at July 18, 2007 12:29 PM
Comment #226744

Jim T,

I like your attitude.

I am nursing a hope that Baby Boomers will do for the word “old” what gays and lesbians did for the word “queer” — that is, turn a potential put-down into a rallying cry.

Alas, if history is any guide they will probably demand to be called “Active and Sexy Americans” or something equally silly.

Posted by: Woody Mena at July 18, 2007 2:13 PM
Comment #226755

Woody said

Finally, following the Republican line on the issues is not noteworthy.

Woody you crack me up!

Here’s a difference or two though:

only John McCain looks like Yoda. Just how the hell you think he gets up those mountains? He uses the “force.” BTW, McCain is a “maverick” only in the minds of some. His voting record in the Senate is as conservative as any other “non-maverick” republican.

only Thompson is on TV all the time—oh that’s right he isn’t running for president, never mind.

Posted by: Kim-Sue at July 18, 2007 4:26 PM
Comment #226770
Just more of the same old stuff…pander, puff, parade,

Seems both parties are guilty of this. Just pandering to the other side of the spectrum or the other, whatever it takes to get nominated and elected…

Posted by: Rhinehold at July 18, 2007 6:19 PM
Comment #226806

Here is an interesting tidbit from Politics1 on fund raising:

The Hotline noted that Congressman Ron Paul’s cash-on-hand tally is not only more than that of US Senator John McCain - but Paul’s total is also more than the combined cash-on-hand total of Sam Brownback, Mike Huckabee, Duncan Hunter, Tom Tancredo, Tommy Thompson, Dennis Kucinich (D) and Mike Gravel (D).

Are many Republican voters getting a new look at the Libertarian Party through Ron Paul’s eyes?

Posted by: David R. Remer at July 18, 2007 10:36 PM
Comment #226817

Dream on
I put a fiver on Thomson,especially when I learned he had lobbied for a pro-abortion rights group.In other words he is for sale and has the John Wayne/ RR demeanor.Plus there is less worry that he might try and think for himself and get us into a Iraq type mess.PS I have some background in large public events in the nuts and bolts area.Any one that claims we should not hold being an actor against them has never had to deal with same.

Posted by: BillS at July 18, 2007 11:37 PM
Comment #226833

I would put some of your issues slightly differently.

First off. McCain and Giulani are not conservatives. People who support Abortion, Gay marriage do not appeal to the conservative base of the republican party. Fred T does support conservative values.

As far as being the “It” candidate, Thompson hasn’t even announced yet. He may get his shot at being the “it” if he decides to run.

IT will be interesting to see what happens when he does. He is the only conservative in the group. He has more experience than Obama. He’s not corrupt like Hillary. And he supports conservative values that McCain and Rudi do not. And that the former Mass governor (Romney?) only recently flip flopped to and found conservative values. His election year conversion to conservatism is about as believable as John Kerry going on the air in 2004 proclaiming that “in his heart” he is against abortion.

Posted by: Stephenl at July 19, 2007 5:38 AM
Comment #226834

I also find the new fond sexism and racism of the democrat party to be a concern. This year in the democrat party Women presidents and black VPs are in vogue.

Hold your water my sexist-racist friends. Because White Men are not to be run it appears.

I’d suggest that the smart thing for Fred Thompson to do, or Ruid, would be to make Condi Rice their Vp. And then the Republican can point to the Sexism and racism of the democrats
oH THE HORROR that the democrat party doesn’t feel it’s time to give a black woman a chance…thank God for the Republicans! How dare the democrats show such racism and sexism?

See, two can play at that game and it’s meaningless propaganda.

Posted by: Stephenl at July 19, 2007 5:44 AM
Comment #226836


I am completely baffled by your comment about racism and sexism. The Democrat field is very diverse, including a white guy. The Republican field is not.

If you are referring to my observation that Rudy, Fred, and John are white guys… well, it’s true. I don’t see what’s wrong with mentioning it. Some of my best friends are white males. :)

Posted by: Woody Mena at July 19, 2007 7:09 AM
Comment #226846

Stephenl, Ron Paul’s record is more conservative than Thompson’s regarding government and fiscal issues.

Posted by: David R. Remer at July 19, 2007 9:17 AM
Comment #226957
I don’t see what’s wrong with mentioning it.

Of course not, how is the democratic party suppose to keep/retain power without pointing out race and having divided against ourselves based on a meaningless characteristic if they don’t keep pointing it out to people?

Posted by: Rhinehold at July 20, 2007 4:01 PM
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