DING DING DING! LADIES AND GENTLEMEN, WELCOME TO CAMPAIGN TRAIL BOXING! In this corner, weighing in with all the baggage from two disastrous terms of Dubya in the White House, from Arizona, it's John "the Marauder" McCain! (Cheers from the right side of the stadium.) In this corner, weighing in with Republican smear accusations of being a "tax-and-spend liberal," from Illinois, it's Barack "the Gentleman" Obama! (Cheers from the left side of the stadium.)
REF (to the two fighters): Now men, I want a clean fight. No hitting below the belt. No stompin' on each other's feet. No blows to the back. Now, go back to your corners and let the fight begin. DING DING DING!
Announcer: The audience goes nuts! Both candidates step out of the corners sparring.
RIGHT JAB FROM MCCAIN: "There will be change in Washington. The question is what kind of change? Will we enact the single largest tax increase since the Second World War, as my opponent proposes?" (Speaking to small business owners in Washington, Tuesday, June 10, 2008.)
Announcer: Ouch! That stings!
LEFT JAB FROM OBAMA: "I've said that McCain is running to serve out a third Bush term. But the truth is, when it comes to taxes, that's not being fair to George Bush. McCain wants to add $300 billion more in tax breaks and loopholes for big corporations and the wealthy and he hasn't even explained how to pay for it." (Speaking at a campaign stop in St. Louis, Tuesday, June 10, 2008.)
Announcer: That caught McCain off guard! The Marauder is dazed, but not down. He's leaps in on Obama.
LEFT HOOK FROM MCCAIN: "Under Sen. Obama's tax plan, Americans of every background would see their taxes rise -- seniors, parents, small-business owners and just about everyone who has even a modest investment in the market."
Announcer: It stings, but I've seen worse. Obama collects himself and moves in for a deadly hook.
COUNTER HOOK FROM OBAMA: "The way that he's characterizing what I'm prescribing is just wrong. My tax reform plan would cut taxes for 95 percent of workers."
Announcer: Oh man! Didn't even connect! Didn't even bruise McCain! What was he thinking? McCain darts to the center of the ring, fists of fury swinging....
RIGHT UPPERCUT FROM MCCAIN: "I think there are a lot of Senator Clinton’s supporters who will support me because of their belief that Senator Obama does not have the experience or the knowledge or the judgment to address this nation’s national security challenges given we are in two wars." (Speaking in Louisiana, Wednesday, June 11, 2008.)
Announcer: Whoa, that's gotta hurt! Obama clearly didn't see that one coming. The "lack of experience" uppercut nails Obama every time. He's gotta think of an effective move to counter it, folks!
LEFT HOOK FROM OBAMA: "'My opponent in this general election, John McCain – his idea of Social Security amounts to four more years of what was attempted and failed under George W. Bush,' Mr. Obama said, referring to Mr. McCain’s previous support of private accounts within Social Security. 'Yesterday, he tried to deny that he ever took that position, which leads us to wonder if he had a change of heart or a change of politics.'" (From the New York Times, June 13, 2008.)
Announcer: I've seen better. Let's just say: The damage isn't permanent. Now McCain -- the Arizona Marauder -- moves in with a fierce uppercut.
UPPERCUT FROM MCCAIN (IN RESPONSE TO OBAMA'S CLAIM THAT MCCAIN IS RUNNING FOR BUSH'S THIRD TERM): McCain says Obama is running for "Jimmy Carter's second term."
Announcer: The damage is minimal, folks, because most of the people in the arena suffer from historical amnesia and don't know what the hell McCain is talking about. Jimmy Carter? Who's that mofo? Wasn't that the cat who got KO'ed in the fourth round by Larry Holmes at Caesars Palace back in '80?
DING DING DING! End of Round One.
Announcer: So far, it has been a clean fight -- nothing below the belt. Stay tuned, boxing fans! This is just getting good!