What Google Can Tell Us about the 2012 Field

People used to be Rockefeller Republicans, and now everyone wants to be a Ronald Reagan Republican. Will people some day be bragging that they are Michele Bachmann Republicans? Not if the number one things she is associated with continue to be chutzpah and slavery. Chutzpah and slavery — not a good combination.

One also wonders how “Michele Bachmann hot” is a major search term. Most people use search engines to find out stuff. How do you change a tire? Is it bad to drink bleach? Is Michele Bachmann hot? Then again, “Michele Bachmann Jewish” is another common query on Google. This could be because she “considers herself Jewish.” She worked in a kibbutz, and she loves Israel more than almost anything. But she is an evangelical Lutheran (yes, that’s a thing) of the sort that may or may not think the Pope is the antichrist. One thing is certain under a Bachmann administration: Israel’s security will be assured, but we may have to go to war with Vatican City.

What about Mitt Romney? One would imagine that Google searches would be like a word association game, and the likeliest terms would be “plastic,” “wooden” (odd that you can be both plastic and wooden, but Mittens makes it work), “flip flopper,” “Ken doll,” “Brill creme.” Somehow, one of the main terms associated with Mitt Romney is “skinny jeans.” Who knew he was a hipster? This raises an urgent question: will Romney’s cassette-only electro-folk release of Bollywood covers come back to haunt him in Iowa?

Also, as Gail Collins has been fond of pointing out, Mitt may never overcome his dog problem. Barack Obama may be a Nazi/Communist, but he never drove to Canada with his dog strapped to the top of the car.

The lesser lights of the Republican field play more or less to type on Google. Tim Pawlenty is boring, though being associated with “definitely not gay” has to be counted as a plus in a GOP primary.

Herman Cain hates the Federal Reserve and abortion. Back in the 1990s or early 2000s you might have wondered if if there was anything Republicans could hate more than abortion; then you found out about the Fed and Barack Obama.

Again, Google tells us what we already know: Newt Gingrich is a player who blings it out at Tiffany’s. Basically, he’s a rapper. He don’t love them hos.

Rudy Giuliani is a cross-dresser. This may not play well in Iowa or New Hampshire, but it does explain why he focused his 2008 campaign efforts in Florida.

What this exercise teaches us is that Mitt Romney, again, edges out his rivals. Bachmann is a sexy Jewess (plus), but pro-slavery (generally a minus). Pawlenty is definitely not gay (plus), but we don’t really have anything else to say about him. Giuliani loses points for dressing in drag (like Obama, he is viewed by most of the GOP primary electorate as a kind of foreigner, to be treated with a reasonable degree of suspicion), while Gingrich makes the only political error that really matters: failing to distract people from his odious personal behavior. Cain has the Federal Reserve but Ron Paul already owns that issue, and being against abortion in a Republican primary is like being against lice in the Gulag. It’s not going to set you apart from the crowd.

This leaves Romney — the hipster who passed sort-of universal healthcare in Massachusetts and drove to Ontario covered in dog shit. Compared to the competition, that doesn’t seem half bad.

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