I was driving to work earlier this week, and I was listening to NPR as I always do, and I heard the most wonderful quote from Brian Fisher, the director of issue analysis at the American Family Association (a.k.a. AFA, a.k.a. kinda creepy right-wing religious group). He was speaking about the current crop of GOP presidential hopefuls. He started off with a rather simple statement, saying, “There is no perfect candidate.” And had he left it at that, most of us would have agreed, and then been on our merry ways to work, or the unemployment line, or to Occupy Wall Street. But no, Mr. Fisher followed it up with, “Jesus Christ is not on the ballot.”
You're right Bry-Bry, he's not. The remaining figures are a Mormon businessman, a Pudgy former Speaker of the House, Ross Perot on (legalized) crack, and then a few other lackeys that haven't quite realized that the jig is up. Jesus is surely missing, but what if he wasn't? That got me to thinking.
What if Jesus wanted to run for President? Well, first off, he couldn't. Jesus was born outside of the United States. Alexander Hamilton had to settle for Secretary of the Treasury, so why should Jesus be any different? But his dad is all knowing and all seeing, so I'm sure he could get that part of the Constitution changed without much effort. Hell, people were clamoring to change it to let Governor Schwarzenegger take a shot at it. How could not they let the son of God have a go?
Actual legal roadblocks aside, the thought of it was so interesting that I had to pursue the line of reasoning. Besides, when have the Republicans ever let the Constitution dictate their actions. Oh, I also think I skipped the part where Jesus is obviously a Republican. Not because they are a party of righteous individuals, or even the most devout (they are). No, it is only because he could never win in the Democratic Party. They have their Messiah, and he is that big-eared guy with the funny name, who is already in the White House. He shouted from the podium, “Yes, we can!” and “Change we can believe in.” His flock shouted loud and proud then, and pride is a tough thing to swallow in four years time. If Yahweh Jr. wanted his way, he'd have to do it through the GOP.
Now, there are also a few other roadblocks that Jesus would encounter during his campaign, and most of it would come from his opponents. No matter how great a candidate really is, his opponents (and their Super PACs) will find some way to try and knock him off his pedestal. Here is a short list of targets his GOP rivals would have in their neatly parted crosshairs.
- Jesus was a Jew: there has never been a Jewish President before, and only the Mormon would let that detail slide.
- Jesus was kind of a hippie: Love thy neighbor? Even if that neighbor wants to just walk over your unprotected border, steal the job your not willing to do, and pay the taxes your not willing to pay. I don't think so, Jesus!
- He's kind of preachy: Not Falwell preachy, but pretty God damn preachy.
There are also a slew of reasons why he would be a great President, but those would get washed away in the tidal wave of negative campaign ads. They are still worth noting.
- Jesus was the son of a carpenter: Not Richard or Karen Carpenter, but a good old-fashioned blue tunic-ed carpenter. Kind of like Joe the plumber, but with a more powerful father.
- Jesus was a man of the people: Although the people in his day would follow just about anyone who had a good enough story to back up their crazy talk, his rhetoric was Biblical! Kind of like Ron Paul's.
- Who else could quote scripture in 1st person? Nobody, that's who. The evangelicals would eat that shit up.
Unfortunately, Jesus could never be President of the United States, or even Governor of any state. He is far too controversial, and a polarizing figure. Those people never get elected. No, it is always some white-washed candidate who is just palatable enough to the independents to get enough votes outside of their already fervent and devoted base that gets elected. Jesus would have about as much chance to change the world in his time as, well, Jesus V1.0. Do you remember the first time he tried to speak out and get people to follow him? Yeah, how did that work out? At least after he washed out of the GOP primary, he could get a book deal or tour the world giving lectures at $25,000 an appearance. That is much better than baking in the sun for nine hours or so, and then coming back to life only to be replaced by a giant candy-delivering bunny.