Whether it's a Republican mayor on crime -- "The streets are safe in Philadelphia. It's only the people who make them unsafe (Frank Rizzo) -- or his Democratic counterpart on the same subject -- "Outside of the killings, Washington has one of the lowest crime rates in the country" (Marion Barry) -- political discourse is often off-course, not to mention unintentionally hilarious.
Wickedly funny when read from either direction, this book presents both Republican stupidity ("Approximately 80 percent of our air pollution stems from vegetation"-- Ronald Reagan) and matching head-slappers from Democrats ("For those who died [in the San Francisco earthquake], their lives will never be the same again" -- Barbara Boxer).
The 267 Stupidest Things . . is the perfect antidote to election-year bombast.
|Edition description:||First Edition|
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From The 267 Stupidest Things Republicans Ever Said -- the Letter "A"
(see below for some of the stupidest things democrats ever said)
"What does an actor know about politics?"
-- Ronald Reagan, criticizing Ed Asner (then president of the Screen Actors Guild) for opposing American foreign policy
"Does a bank president know when a bank teller is fiddling around with the books? No."
-- Donald T. Regan (White House Chief of Staff under Ronald Reagan), explaining how $30 million could have been paid to the Nicaraguan Contras without the administration's knowledge.
"I'll hire blacks as long as they can do the cotton-pickin' job."
-- Evan Mecham (governor of Arizona, 1987-1988)
"I have a lot of African-American friends."
-- Larry Pressler (senator from South Dakota, 1979-1996), explaining how he was going to be elected mayor of Washington, D.C. He eventually decided not to run.
"Let me tell you, you can get a lot of those Howdy Doody shirts for cheap today."
-- Pat Buchanan (1996 Republican presidential candidate), referring to Lamar Alexander's trademark red-and-black-checkered shirts, on the day that Alexander dropped out of the 1996 presidential race
"I understand it's a nice lifestyle. I love golf, and I understand they have a lot of nice golf courses."
-- Chic Hecht (senator from Nevada, 1983-1988), explaining why he wanted to be ambassador to the Bahamas. Shortly after this statement, he got the job!
"This is a man who was not only the president of the National Council of Shopping Centers, but the International Council of Shopping Centers in 1986, and traveled around the world."
-- Rudy Boschwitz (senator from Minnesota, 1978-1991), in a letter asking the Reagan administration to name Melvin F. Sembler ambassador to Australia. Sembler got the job.
"Wherever I have gone in this country, I have found Americans."
-- Alf Landon (1936 Republican presidential nominee)
"The American people is very supportive of me."
-- George W. Bush (governor of Texas, 1995-), during an interview with Jane Clayson of CBS.
"Who will the Antichrist be? I don't know. Nobody else knows. Of course, he'll be Jewish."
-- Jerry Falwell (president, Moral Majority, 1979-1990)
"I hope I stand for anti-bigotry, anti-Semitism, anti-racism."
-- George Bush
"I will never apologize for the United States of America -- I don't care what the facts are."
-- George Bush, speaking to Republican ethnic leaders in 1988 after the unintentional downing of an Iranian airplane. Bush also said, "I'm not an apologize-for-America kind of guy."
"I'm apologizing for the conduct that it was alleged that I did."
-- Robert Packwood (senator from Oregon, 1969-1995). Packwood was accused of sexually harassing dozens of women. He claimed that he didn't remember anything.
"You cannot be president of the United States if you don't have faith. Remember Lincoln, going to his knees in times of trial and the Civil War and all that stuff. You can't be. And we are blessed. So don't feel sorry for -- don't cry for me, Argentina. Message: I care."
-- George Bush, to employees of an insurance company during the 1992 New Hampshire presidential primary
"Mr. Nixon was the thirty-seventh President of the United States. He had been preceded by thirty-six others."
-- Gerald Ford (president, 1974-1977)
"I've not tied my life by it, but I won't answer the question the other way because I don't know enough about it to say, is there something to it or not."
-- Ronald Reagan, asked if he believed in astrology -- after it was revealed that his wife Nancy regularly consulted an astrologer for advice on the President's schedule
"Boy, they were big on crematoriums, weren't they?"
-- George Bush, touring Auschwitz in 1987
From The 267 Stupidest Things Democrats Ever Said (the Letter "A")
"We shall reach greater and greater platitudes of achievement."
-- Richard J. Daley (mayor of Chicago, 1955-1976)
"If President Reagan could be an actor and become president, maybe I could become an actor. I've got a good pension. I can work for cheap."
-- Bill Clinton, at a Hollywood fund-raiser
"I look like you."
-- Lawrence Bell (candidate for mayor of Baltimore, 1999), telling a black crowd why they should vote for him
"The first black president will be a politician who is black."
-- Doug Wilder (governor of Virginia, 1989-1993). Wilder, who is black, briefly sought the Democratic presidential nomination in 1992.
Air Force One
"I may be the only person who's flown on both Air Force One and Con Air."
-- Webster Hubbell (assistant attorney general, 1993-1994), to the American Bar Association convention. Hubbell spent eighteen months in jail for mail and tax fraud.
"It depends on how you define alone . . ."
-- Bill Clinton, in his grand jury testimony on the Monica Lewinsky affair
"There were a lot of times when we were alone, but I never really thought we were."
-- Bill Clinton, elaborating on the nuances of "alone" for the grand jury
"I thought it was a significant development for American society."
-- Jim Wright (Speaker, U.S. House of Representatives, 1986-1989), on why he placed a plug in The Congressional Record for a motivational video by a company that paid his wife $36,000 a year
"I share your view that the urgent problems of species extinction and the conservation of biological diversity should be addressed. The first step in saving any plant or animal from extinction is to become aware of and respect the fragile ecosystems that make up our own planet."
-- Al Gore, answering a letter from a Dallas couple who complained that Amtrak service cuts were eliminating the "Texas Eagle" connecting Dallas to the West Coast and Chicago
"His boss may have needed choking. It may have been justified. . . . Someone should have asked the question, 'What prompted that?'"
-- Willie Brown (mayor of San Francisco, 1996-), defending Latrell Sprewell of the Golden State Warriors for choking and threatening to kill his coach. Brown also said, "This is not a person accused of rape, accused of kicking a TV cameraman, accused of carrying a gun on an airplane."