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COMMENTARY: Republican candidates possessed by demons

A whimsical poll report last Tuesday by Public Policy Polling (PPP) has turned into a stunning revelation that is sweeping the nation: Republican candidates are possessed by demons. And according to some experts, that belief “explains it all” for distraught voters.

The light-hearted Halloween poll of 1,200 likely voters, an innocuous diversion from the brawling punditry that has become U.S. politics, found that 62 percent of voters have a favorable opinion of the fanciful holiday, but not so of human nature.

PPP reported that 68 percent of Republicans believe in demon possession, a belief proclaimed by some to be a manifestation of voters’ subconscious awareness that many of their elected representatives are evil.

“The data reveal what so many voters have been feeling deep in their hearts, but have not been able to articulate,” said Dr. Phil, popular television show host. “For them, demon possession explains it all — their representatives aren’t that bad on their own. For example, the absolutely crazy-hateful stuff male Republican candidates have been saying about women, homosexuals, welfare recipients, immigrants — and our first African-American president — all that hate has filled voters’ psyches to the point of overflowing. What we see here is a plea for release from the evil for themselves and their politicians, a healthy scramble to escape campaign Hell.”

Some experts chose to remain silent and let the revelation run its natural course, including Celinda Lake, a leading strategist for the Democratic Party, who refused to comment on the poll numbers. But an unnamed source in her office said that, upon hearing the news, she leapt from her desk and clicked her heels in the air.

Meanwhile, to the surprise of many political observers, one leading Republican strategist indicated an acceptance of demons walking the earth, insisting that any condemnation of possessed candidates would be a liberal knee-jerk reaction and calling for a kinder and gentler response.

“Our Republican candidates are good men, good patriots,” said Karl Rove, co-founder of conservative super PAC American Crossroads. “But it is clear that they’ve been lured away from our vision of a prosperous patriarchy by seductive demons who are leading them down a steep path of liberal decline. What we have to do now is, we’ve got to pray for the redemption of our Republican candidates’ souls — just like we pray away the gay, we’ve got to pray away the evil. We’ve got to lay on hands, push against the demons, just squash them right out of our guys and shove the loathsome creatures back into Hell’s kitchen where they belong. You know, this all started with that darn apple.”

While the likes of Sean Hannity mimicked Rove’s odd call for redemptive prayer and indicated that he, too, believes in demon possession, other pundits scoffed at Rove’s readiness to anthropomorphize evil. They indicated they were not inclined to forgive those whose ignorance and weak characters have purportedly made them vulnerable to Satan’s minions any more than they are ready to forgive the candidates’ gravely erroneous and dangerous statements on the campaign trail.

One Beltway insider, who requested anonymity, said, “That’s tripe, rancid tripe.” She described the “strategically timed” release of the poll results as a “cynical and desperate RNC tactic to take advantage of undecided faith-based voters’ naïveté and absolve GOP candidates of responsibility for their sexist, racist, classist and homophobic pronouncements. Republican candidates are doing the derriere shuffle along the campaign trail, with both feet in their mouths and their heads stuck someplace dark and dreary. Anyone who believes demons caused that, and prayer will fix it, deserves them.”

Despite more rational explanations for reprehensible republican behavior, even some Washington regulars embrace the demon theory. A congressional aide overheard outside the White House Press Briefing Room gasped, “Oh my god, oh my god! I f—–g knew it! The Reps have been damned by their own perniciousness. No purgatory for those bastards — and that’s the last run I make to CVS for foundation. They can get their tans in Hell!”

On a related note, another poll result reveals an underlying cause of the dismally low voter turnout in U.S. presidential elections (56.9 percent in 2008): Only 45 percent of those polled enjoy watching horror movies.

Anecdotal evidence suggests the 11.9 percent difference represents people who can be lured to the polls with popcorn.



Kit-Bacon Gressitt's commentary and political fiction can be read on her blog Excuse Me, I'm Writing and is republished by SDGLN, The Ocean Beach Rag, San Diego Free Press and The Progressive Post. She formerly worked for the North County Times. She is also host of Fallbrook's monthly Writers Read open mic and can be reached at kbgressitt@gmail.com.