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Former Bush Family Pet Announces Presidential Run
WASHINGTON, D.C. Former Bush family pet, Barney, has announced that he will run for President as an independent candidate in 2008. Barney, who resigned from his post as Presidential dog earlier this year, is upbeat about his prospects for success.
"Barney is eager to run," says a close adviser. "In fact, Barney is always eager to run. It's his canine nature. Throw a stick and Barney will scramble after it without hesitation. He and President Bush share that instinct, although Barney is bright enough to return with the stick. President Bush gets confused and just stands there until the Secret Service brings him back home to Laura."
Explains professional dog walker and close personal friend, Betty Donaldson, "Barney has a few bones to pick with the Bush Administration. That's because Barney follows some simple rules in his life. Never pee in anyone's flowerbed. Engage in battle only when your doggie dish or territory is directly threatened. Never foul your own nest. Barney feels that President Bush has disregarded these rules by idiotically invading Iraq, ignoring global warming, appointing crooked, inept cronies to important jobs, and implementing a wide range of other destructive policies. Also, President Bush eats from the table, which disturbs Barney. He was taught never to do that."
Adds former Barney trainer, James Nelson, "Barney believes that George Bush should be whapped repeatedly on the snout with a rolled-up newspaper. While I would never endorse such negative training methods, I can kind of see Barney's point in this case."
Supporters have rallied to Barney's cause. "Remember that maverick image John McCain used to have?" asks Barney campaign worker James Bennett of Fort Hood, Indiana. "You know, before McCain started sucking up to the religious right and betraying the independent ideals he supposedly represents? Barney is the real thing. He's never run with the political pack. You might even call him a lone wolf. I admire that."
PETA President, Ingrid Newkirk, elaborates, "I think that being a dog gives Barney a unique perspective on human activity. Dogs don't torture each other, or lie, or pretend to forget things when called up before Congressional committees. I mean, find me a dog who isn't a better person than Alberto Gonzales. Barney can see that we're really messing up in the dominant species department. My guess is that he's realized primates just aren't fit for the job. We've had a good run, if you ignore the fact that we're in the midst of destroying our own planet. Well, hey, everybody makes mistakes sometimes, you know? Me, I think it might be a good moment for us to step aside and give another species a shot."
Film critic Roger Ebert believes that Barney's positive attitude towards public service was heavily influenced by American cinema. "Barney grew up watching old Rin Tin Tin, Lassie and Benji films. He saw that dogs could really help people out of serious problems, like being tied to train tracks or trapped in deep wells. He also learned that humans aren't always particularly bright. I think watching these heroic dogs formed Barney's character. Running for President - a position that once meant trying to help average Americans rather than screwing them - is a reflection of those core beliefs."
Long-time Republican political operatives disagree.
"I don't think this is a genuine campaign at all," says one anonymous White House advisor. "I believe Barney is sniffing around for a political appointment, or maybe even for the Vice-Presidency. I mean, let's get serious. He's a dog. Granted, we were able to convince people that George Bush is competent, at least long enough to get him into office twice, which was frankly a miracle. But even sophisticated political spinning won't get a yapping dog elected president. Maybe Vice President, but not President."
Political analyst Howard Fineman disagrees. "I've been pointing out for a while that this election cycle is tailor-made for a strong independent candidate. Barney fits the collar. He's a far better attack dog than any of the Republican candidates, who may behave as if they plan to bite you in the leg but are unlikely to do so. Plus, as a dog of color, he brings far more diversity to the table than even the Democratic candidates do. I think we're all going to be a bit surprised by what a Barney candidacy unleashes."