U.S. candidates use shows to stump – Metro US

U.S. candidates use shows to stump

PRIMARY ANGLES: Last week at a movie junket in Los Angeles, it wasn’t hard to close your eyes and imagine that you were actually in New Hampshire or Iowa, listening to the earnest stumping of in some diner or community centre picked for its media-friendly atmosphere. While Diane Keaton and director Callie Khouri did their best to try and make a mediocre buddy heist comedy sound like The Battle Of Algiers, Ted Danson spent most of his press time pitching for his friend Hillary Clinton, going so far as to try and convince politely incredulous reporters that the former first lady and New York senator was “great to go out with for a beer.”

While supporters of fringe candidate Dennis Kucinich try and get their man some press by heckling Bill Maher on Jay Leno’s show, Hillary is using higher profile spots on venues like Tyra Banks’ daytime chat show to try and show her common touch – without the aid of beer, one presumes. According to a Zap2It story, Clinton told Banks that, in spite of her apparent wish to park her suitcases there again, the White House was like a jail.

Quoting Harry Truman, Clinton said that the presidential mansion was “like the crown jewel of the American penal system because you can feel confined.” One presumes she was referring to being told not to go near the Oval Office during office hours. She also said that she wouldn’t mind doing a stint on a reality show like Dancing with the Stars, American Idol or America’s Next Top Model. (Kudos to Banks for showing the restraint not to suggest Wife Swap – few of us could resist.)

“In my dreams,” Clinton told Banks, “I would be on America’s Next Top Model, but in reality I would have to chose my limited talents and of them, dancing is better than singing. You do not want me to sing.”

Responding to Clinton the next day, actor and Republican presidential hopeful Fred Thompson told the press, “Like Mrs. Clinton, I wouldn’t mind being on TV – oh, wait. I am! And I’m pretty sure Law & Order pays better than, uh, America’s Funniest Home Videos or whatever.”

Campaigning in South Carolina for the upcoming primary there, Mike Huckabee said he’d do Idol if he could play Freebird on bass instead of singing, while Ron Paul told reporters that he’d love to appear on BET’s Keyshia Cole: The Way It Is. “No guys, really. I do. She’s, uh, jamming. Jamming – is that right?”

THE SHOW MUST GO ON: As it’s as certain as death that the Oscars won’t be getting a waiver from the Writer’s Guild of America for next month’s awards show, the show’s producers say they’ve got a Plan B. According to a Variety story, “it’s likely that the alternative show would rely on industry heavyweights penning their own speeches and presenting the awards.” Rumours that the audience would consist of a single cardboard cutout of Jack Nicholson remain unconfirmed.

Rick McGinnis


Rick McGinnis writes about music, movies, books and television, but not opera. He walked 47 miles of barbed wire and has a cobra snake for a necktie.

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