- The Washington Times - Monday, August 25, 2008

Gettin’ global

Denver doesn’t belong to the Democrats alone this week. A rival presence is afoot. Some two dozen staffers from Sen. John McCain’s campaign have taken office space near the convention — which is a “A Mile High and an Inch Deep,” they say.

Luminaries will be present, though. Rudy Giuliani and Mitt Romney, along with Gov. Tim Pawlenty of Minnesota, will be part of an advance team hoping to distract the news media from Sen. Barack Obama, at least for a few nanoseconds.

Mr. McCain could be borrowing a page from a certain famous Democrat’s playbook when the Republican National Convention gets under way in St. Paul on Sept. 1. The overall convention theme has a definitive JFK feel to it — “Country First.”

The opening acts are pure Republican, however. Speakers include President Bush and Laura Bush, Vice President Cheney, Mr. Giuliani, Mike Huckabee, Tom Ridge, Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, Fred Thompson, Michael Steele, Mr. Romney and Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal.

The GOP is getting global, meanwhile, with an eye on doves, not hawks.

“Our next president will have a mandate to build an enduring global peace on the foundations of freedom, security, opportunity, prosperity and hope,” Mr. McCain said of his own intentions.

“Events will reflect his vision of an America in pursuit of peace and seen as a beacon of goodwill and hope throughout the world,” convention officials added.

Mirth worth

OK, everybody lighten up as we slouch toward Armageddon, Dunkin’ Donuts or maybe Home Depot. Here’s one Obama joke and one McCain joke free of charge, both from a study by Robert Lichter, director of the Center for Media and Public Affairs. He’s got news about such things.

But first the jokes.

“His tour may strike some as presumptuous. In fact, I joked that Obama would be stopping in Bethlehem to visit the manger where he was born.” — The Comedy Channel’s Jon Stewart.

“McCain was asked how he’s going to conserve energy. He said by taking three naps a day.” — NBC’s Jay Leno.

Here are the findings from the Center’s newly released “2008 Political Humor Study,” which analyzed jokes made between Jan. 1 and July 31 on late night NBC, CBS and Comedy Central.

Barack Obama still lags far behind Hillary Clinton and John McCain as the most joked-about presidential candidate in opening monologues by hosts on the late-night TV talk shows,” the study said.

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