Friday, May 18, 2007

I’m Still Thinking Mike

Our Town downtown
April 9, 2007

A few weeks ago we said here that we hoped Mike Bloomberg would run for President. Wouldn’t you know, right after we said that we read that he was in a slump, with the cops’ shooting of Sean Bell and the mayor’s not coming home when the 10 African immigrants burned to death in a Bronx fire; school bus problems, homeless family problems. OK, it was a string of non-successes for sure. But they weren’t utter-political-failure events, any of them. They didn’t change my mind. In fact now more than ever I hope he runs.

I just got an email from Obama—you probably did too—talking about his amazing feat of raising Hillary-level bucks. Oh, it is quite something, all that money so soon. He’s magic right now. He’s D-Wade. I don’t know what we want that’s more than that from him. Maybe nothing. He’s fresh when we need fresh. Not just because of Bush and Iraq either. We just want fresh. It’s a TV land we live in and he’s the new show. That’s the appeal. His being black is not something we’ve never seen before. His having gone to Harvard Law School is not out of this world either. Joe Biden was way off; Obama’s not articulate in some special new way to white people. Even the most sequestered white people have seen black politicians, actors, newscasters, and Tiger Woods. And Oprah, for God sakes. (Joe, seeing a U.S. senator with hair plugs is way more unusual to America’s eyes than seeing an articulate black person.)

I don’t know though that his freshness will not wilt. There’s no guarantee. He’s going to have to work at it and make fresh statements about the same old issues that are out there being talked about by all the candidates and he’s got to do it in a voice that’s better than anybody else’s. He’s got that ability. We’ll see how he does.

Hillary has a terrible voice. I don’t know if she can overcome it if she’s paired against Obama. Elizabeth Edwards has a wonderful voice with a great ability to choose the perfect word, but her husband doesn’t. He’s hard-charging smart but he’d be the weatherman on my broadcast team. Not the lead anchor. Obama would get that, with Elizabeth in the chair next to him. Hillary would get the weekends.

Rudy fascinates me, and not all negatively. Currently I’m fascinated by this though: Does he really think America will elect him and have his wife be the First Lady? There is no chance in hell that they’ll do that. Drop out now. Go back to your old haircut and get a show on TV or radio. You have a better voice than Obama and your sentence structure is the best I’ve ever heard in a candidate. So get a show. You and Judith are not going to be living in the White House.

John McCain’s soft voice is as phony as Woody Hayes, the old Ohio State football coach who slugged a player on the opposing team during a bowl game. He could talk just as soft as McCain though. I don’t trust that voice.

Mitt Romney is a guy if he lived on your street in whatever town or city you lived in, you’d probably call him The President. He’s got something in that way for sure. But he’s from yesterday and you’d be thinking of a president in some old movie. He can’t be president in these times. He’s just too old fashioned, even if it’s appealing on some level.That leaves Mike Bloomberg, who you’d never call Mr. President on your block. He wouldn’t live on your block. He’s got too much money to live near you. And I wouldn’t pick him for my news team either. He looks like a cute parrot and his voice doesn’t carry at all. And he bugs me that he needs so many material goods. All those homes. It’s sinful really. But I’ve got different sins of my own. So do you. He’d make a good president.

-- Bill Gunlocke

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