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Bob Taft, Raw & Uncut 

Handlers unveil the new and improved Bobby T.

"Thank you, the people of Ohio, for having no other - choice but to reelect me, Bobby T."
  • "Thank you, the people of Ohio, for having no other choice but to reelect me, Bobby T."
To: Governor Taft
From: Speechwriting Dept.
Re: Your acceptance speech

Dear Mr. Governor Sir:

Since your reelection is all but assured, we have taken the liberty of preparing your acceptance speech. You will note a decided change in tone.

Despite your impending landslide, our polling reveals that voters nonetheless regard you as weak, indecisive, and possessing the testicular fortitude of a junior accountant. Further research indicates that, had you a more worthy opponent -- say, a member of the walleye family -- you would have lost by a considerable margin. As such, we have taken the liberty of providing you with a personality.

Our internal polling shows that voters want a governor they can sit next to on a bus for six blocks without wanting to stab themselves in the face. After much debate, we have decided to reposition you as Gregarious & Refreshingly Honest.

We realize, Mr. Governor Sir, that having a personality may feel uncomfortable at first. But our numbers indicate that the more lifelike you appear, the better chance you have of pursuing higher office, such as the presidency or Hamilton County auditor. (Research indicates we should prepare for the latter.)

The speech is as follows. Per your standing request, all big words will be excised by the final draft. Enjoy the new you!

[Enter stage left. Pretend applause is overwhelming and that you're deeply moved.] Thank you. You're all so fabulous. No, really, just outstanding. I love you all so much. [Wait for applause to die.]

My fellow Ohioans, we are gathered here today for a historic moment. Me, Bobby T, just got reelected.

Now you're probably asking yourself, "Yo, T-man, what's so friggin' historic about that?" Let me tell you: I'm the first governor of Ohio to run the state into the ground yet still manage to get a second term. That's what I'm talking about! [Crowd erupts]

Now I'm not saying I did this alone. That six million bucks in "campaign contributions" [make quotation marks with fingers; add knowing wink] didn't hurt. Which has made me all the more committed to handing out sweetheart contracts and gutting regulatory agencies, so powerful interests can continue to pillage the living shit out of this state! [Thunderous applause]

Of course, the Bobmeister would be remiss if I didn't thank my opponent, Mike Hegan, or Tim Hagan, or whatever the hell his name was. He ran a formidable race. [Conspicuously try to suppress laughter.] With a few small breaks -- like, say, me getting caught by TV crews naked in a crackhouse with a 16-year-old hooker named Lulu -- he could have scored upwards of 20 percent of the vote. [Note to soundmen: Play laugh track here.]

Seriously, folks, does the Democratic Party blow or what? Who are they going to run against me next time? Wil Cordero? It's not like I had an imposing record that scared challengers away. Hell, if I asked you the standard question, "Are you better off today than you were four years ago?" I'd be charged with assault for making you laugh so hard your hernia blew up! [Amp up laugh track.]

Just look at my education record. Ohio ranks 41st in the nation in percentage of college graduates. Can anybody say "West Virginia"? And while I was busy yapping about creating this high-tech paradise, I was quietly cutting the bejesus out of higher education funding. That means 18 percent tuition hikes. So if you want your kids to go to college, Mom and Dad, you better start teaching 'em how to rob KFC! [Soundmen: Count on natural laughter here.]

And what about the unconstitutional funding for K-12? You think I did something about that? Hell no! I was too busy working on my OhioReads program, which basically involved a photo shoot of me pretending to read to some child models from New York. Is this a beautiful gig or what?

Now don't let anybody tell you Bobby T ain't looking out for the working man. Remember in January, when 200,000 people a week were calling state job centers to file for unemployment, and nobody would answer the phone? Or when we forgot to spend $94 million in free job training money from the feds? Or when I blew $60 million on that Ohio Works system, which we had to scrap because nobody could get the sumbitch to work? That was the T-man running that action. After all, you don't need job training to work at Donatos, am I right? [Soundmen: Play track of crowd chanting, "Bobby, Bobby!"]

But the accomplishment I'm most proud of is my child-support enforcement system, which spits checks out late, to the wrong people, for the wrong amounts, to the wrong addresses. It's my little way of putting some fun back into this whole deadbeat dad thing. You know, like the lottery. "Play the Ohio Child Support Game! You have a one-in-a-million chance of winning!" You like? [Replay chanting track.]

Now I could go on and on about this administration's record, like how my human services director got convicted, or how I created this huge budget deficit, or how the state's economy is moldier than that sandwich you left under the car seat six weeks ago. But the T-man isn't one to brag. Besides, I see an open bar in the back of the room, and I could use an apricot wine cooler right about now.

So let me just conclude by thanking you, the people of Ohio, for having no other choice but to reelect me, Bobby T. I promise that, during the next four years, I'll continue to drive this state into the ground with the utmost inefficiency. We may not be North Mississippi yet, but with the T-man in the saddle, it's all but a lock. [Thunderous applause, exit stage left, sprint toward bar.]

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