Year of the Chauncey Gardiner Democrat?

Last week it struck me that Bob Casey’s attempt to explain his position on the NSA terrorist eavesdropping program to the Philadelphia Inquirer editorial board sounded like Chance the Gardener (“Chauncey Gardiner”) in “Being There.” Last week New Mexico Attorney General Patricia Madrid had her own Chauncey Gardiner moment in debate with Nex Mexico First District Rep. Heather Wilson. Chauncey actually handled the tax question a bit better than Patricia Madrid:

President “Bobby”: Mr. Gardiner, do you agree with Ben, or do you think that we can stimulate growth through temporary incentives?
[Long pause]
Chance the Gardener: As long as the roots are not severed, all is well. And all will be well in the garden.
President “Bobby”: In the garden.
Chance the Gardener: Yes. In the garden, growth has it seasons. First comes spring and summer, but then we have fall and winter. And then we get spring and summer again.
President “Bobby”: Spring and summer.
Chance the Gardener: Yes.
President “Bobby”: Then fall and winter.
Chance the Gardener: Yes.
Benjamin Rand: I think what our insightful young friend is saying is that we welcome the inevitable seasons of nature, but we’re upset by the seasons of our economy.
Chance the Gardener: Yes! There will be growth in the spring!

The Hill has a funny page-one story on Rep. Wilson’s inspired use of Patricia Madrid’s Chauncey Gardiner takeoff today in “Rep. Wilson getting help from debate, 5-foot duck.” Ah, democracy!
In Minnesota, Sixth District congressional candidate Patricia Wetterling has given Chauncey a run for his money as well, and Second District congressional candidate Coleen Rowley hasn’t been far behind. On election night I’d like to keep track of the candidates who have most distinguished themselves for their vacuity. If you think there are others out there who have reached Bob Casey’s level of performance art, I’d appreciate your bringing them to my attention.


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