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ND election parallels presidential race

Observer Viewpoint | Wednesday, August 25, 2004

After a summer spent exploring the political gamut – from Michael Moore’s controversial “Fahrenheit 9/11,” to the Democratic National Convention, to NBC’s Olympic coverage featuring inspirational Iraq – I feel confident in offering some early election advice to Notre Dame students as November approaches.

When people like Bill O’Reilly get in your face with their “issues” and start yelling about this “the most important election of our time,” don’t fret, balk or even gambol – you will find that we’ve already been through this election, if on a lesser scale.

George W. Bush, who, with his father and Lyndon B. Johnson, has proven again that the only things to come out of Texas are steers and weak presidencies, is up for a long campaign haul against Senator John Kerry.

But is it Kerry’s appealing platform that will galvanize this likely photo-finish? Nope. It’s because no one likes George W. Bush.

Now think back six long months to the all-important student body elections where Adam Istvan defeated Charlie Ebersol.

You’ll notice some shocking parallels: on one side we have the gangly orator with a foxy running mate (yeah Karla Bell) who “reported for duty” when called to serve (indulge me here); while the opposition boasts a tepid environmental record (read: Hummer) and whose father got him into the coast guard.

So was it Istvan’s platform that sunk Ebersol?

I think you will see my point.

But really folks, the issues are for weenies – see Bill O’Reilly.

My America features me waking up in the morning knowing full well that the U.S. dollar has little tangible backing though it continually loses ground to foreign currency and the national debt swells, but then recall that my President is a pretty swanky guy and so not care.

Yes, I want a President who can sell me a killer pair of Nikes while convincing me that outsourcing shows unlimited benefits to the American consumer.

Because this is, and always will be, the reality of elections – personal taste comes before political agenda.

For we Domers, that’s a familiar conclusion. And no, Republicans, the Bush twins will not sway my opinion. That was so four years ago.

Daniel BulgerjuniorAlumni HallAug. 24