I'm Such A Shitty Senator

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Rand Paul Escorted Off Stage After Falling Below 2.5% In Middle Of Debate

MILWAUKEE—Interrupted midway through answering a question about how he would reform the nation’s tax code, Republican presidential candidate Rand Paul was reportedly escorted off stage roughly an hour into Tuesday’s GOP primary debate after falling below the minimum 2.5 percent polling threshold necessary for participating in the forum.

Fact-Checking Ben Carson’s Claims

GOP presidential frontrunner Ben Carson is currently under fire for claims he’s made about his past in books and interviews, many of which journalists have alleged are fabricated or skewed in the candidate’s favor. The Onion breaks down what’s truth and what’s fiction.

Republicans’ Demands For Upcoming Debates

Following last week’s contentious debate in Colorado, Republican presidential candidates are formulating demands for future debates in the effort to reduce perceived media bias and foster a more productive, policy-focused discussion. Here are the GOP’s demands for upcoming debates

Top Issues For Voters In The 2016 Election

With the presidential race well underway and the pool of candidates narrowing, Americans will soon have to choose their next leader based on how well they speak to the issues. Here are the top issues that matter for voters in the 2016 election

Winners And Losers Of Last Night’s Debate

The top 10 leading GOP presidential candidates met in Boulder, CO for their third debate last night, hosted by CNBC and featuring a number of contentious moments concerning alleged liberal media bias, frontrunners’ contradictory statements, and more. The Onion breaks down who won and who lost the debate

Ben Carson Tormented By Periodic Rational Thoughts

SAN ANTONIO—Calling the disturbing incidents a persistent source of anguish, GOP presidential candidate Ben Carson told reporters at a Monday campaign stop that he has been tormented by periodic rational thoughts for the past several years.

How Democrats Are Preparing For Their First Debate

The first Democratic presidential debate will be held Tuesday, and the candidates are expected to battle it out over issues as wide-ranging as gun control, climate change, and wealth inequality in America. Here’s how the candidates are preparing for the debate

Group Of Christie Campaign Deserters Found In Forest

SHAMONG, NJ—Huddling together around fires of burning yard signs while sipping small rations of soup from mugs adorned with the phrase “Telling It Like It Is,” a ragged encampment of advisers, pollsters, and volunteers who deserted Chris Christie’s presidential campaign was reportedly found living deep in a New Jersey forest Friday, authorities confirmed.

Sight Of 400 War Elephants On Horizon Marks Hillary Clinton’s Arrival In Swing State

WHEELING, OH—Feeling the earth shake beneath them as they watched the procession climb over the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains toward their village, sources along the Ohio border confirmed Thursday that the sight of 400 war elephants marching on the horizon marked Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton’s arrival to the critical swing state.

Unemployed Single Mother In Rubio Speech Told Candidate About Her Problems In Confidence

CEDAR FALLS, IA—Describing her shock and embarrassment upon learning that her personal struggles were shared with an entire campaign rally audience, 37-year-old Allison Kilpatrick, an unemployed single mother that Republican presidential hopeful Marco Rubio mentioned in a recent stump speech, informed reporters Thursday that she told the candidate about her problems in confidence.

Obama Scrambling Around White House Kitchen Before State Dinner

WASHINGTON—Darting back and forth from refrigerator to sink to prep table while hurriedly preparing 350 hand-carved radish rosettes, a visibly agitated President Obama reported Friday that everything must be absolutely perfect for tonight’s state dinner in honor of Chinese president Xi Jinping.

Voters Look On In Horror As 3 New Republican Candidates Appear In Place Of Scott Walker

MADISON, WI—Overcome by a profound feeling of dread and helplessness as the GOP field multiplied before their eyes, voters at Scott Walker’s press conference yesterday, in which the Wisconsin governor announced he was exiting the presidential race, reportedly looked on in horror as three new Republican contenders appeared on stage in place of the former candidate.

Top Snake Handler Leaves Sinking Huckabee Campaign

LITTLE ROCK, AR—Dealing yet another blow to the former Arkansas governor’s presidential hopes, Dalton Hobbs, one of Mike Huckabee’s top snake handlers, has decided to leave the sinking campaign, sources reported Thursday.

Aides Rush On Stage To Rotate Scott Walker Back To Direction Of Audience

SIMI VALLEY, CA—Upon noticing that the Wisconsin governor had become disoriented during one of the moderator’s questions and begun delivering his response while facing the set’s backdrop, several of his aides rushed on stage during Wednesday’s GOP primary debate to rotate Scott Walker back in the direction of the audience.

GOP Debate Stage Manager Pulls Ladies’ Podium Out Of Storage For Carly Fiorina

SIMI VALLEY, CA—Having rummaged through a cluttered backstage closet for nearly half an hour in an effort to locate its elegantly curved lavender form, stage manager Paul Guzman is said to have finally pulled the GOP’s official ladies’ podium out of storage for Carly Fiorina ahead of Wednesday night’s Republican primary debate.

Who Is Kim Davis?

Rowan County, KY clerk Kim Davis returned to work Monday after being jailed for refusing to issue marriage licenses to gay couples on religious grounds. Here’s what you need to know about the defiant public servant:

Obamas Decide To Stay In White House Until Daughters Finish High School

‘We Don’t Want To Uproot Them Just For Our Jobs,’ Say Parents

WASHINGTON—Saying it wouldn’t be fair to disrupt their lives after seven years in the same school district, Barack and Michelle Obama this week announced their plans to stay in the White House until their daughters graduate high school.

Frenzied Trump Supporters Admit They’d Be Just As Happy Tearing Him To Pieces

‘We’re Just Mad And Want To Destroy Something,’ Say Candidate’s Backers

WASHINGTON—Saying they simply needed something to direct their anger toward, the nation’s frenzied Donald Trump supporters admitted Thursday that, if circumstances were different, they would be just as happy tearing the Republican frontrunner to pieces.

How Trump Continues To Lead The Polls

Recent polls indicate that, despite public outcry against his incendiary comments on women and minorities, Donald Trump is still the leading Republican candidate. Here are some reasons Trump stays so popular with his supporters:

Obama’s Post-Presidency Plans

With his two-term presidency drawing to a close, Barack Obama has been meeting with several high-profile public figures to determine the trajectory of his post–White House legacy. Here are some of the proposed plans

Details Of Donald Trump’s Immigration Plan

This week, Donald Trump unveiled his plan for addressing immigration as president, a series of core principles that specify his heretofore generalized statements about America’s relationship with immigrants. Here are the items detailed in Trump’s outline

Huckabee Campaign Suspended After Candidate Trapped In Briar Patch

HOPE, AR—Saying all public appearances would be canceled until they could find a way to free the former Arkansas governor, officials announced Friday that Mike Huckabee’s presidential campaign had been suspended due to the Republican candidate becoming trapped in a briar patch.

What’s Been Found In Hillary’s Emails So Far

Hillary Clinton agreed to turn over her private email server to the FBI Wednesday after it was alleged that emails sent over her personal account could be compromised outside the possession of the government. Here are some of the contents of Clinton’s emails that have been inspected thus far

Biden Offers Government Post To Elvira, Mistress Of The Dark

WASHINGTON—Calling the late-night horror film host well-suited for the job “and then some,” Vice President Joe Biden offered Elvira, Mistress of the Dark, an entry-level position within the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, White House sources confirmed Thursday.

How The GOP Can Appeal To Women

In light of Donald Trump’s controversial comments about Fox News anchor Megyn Kelly and the Republican Party’s divisive views on Planned Parenthood, many are wondering how the party will win the female vote in next year’s presidential election.

Most Used Words In The GOP Debate

On Thursday night, the top 10 Republican presidential hopefuls gathered at Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland to engage in the first primary debate. Below are the words and phrases used by the candidates, weighted by the frequency with which they appeared.

On Thursday night, the top 10 Republican presidential hopefuls gathered at Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland to engage in the first primary debate. Here are the words and phrases used by the candidates, weighted by the frequency with which they appeared.

Trump Delivers Anecdote About Small Business Owner Who Isn’t Half The Man He Is

CLEVELAND—Noting that there are millions of entrepreneurs throughout the country who are in the same difficult position, Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump responded to a question about the economy at Thursday night’s primary debate by sharing an anecdote about meeting a struggling small business owner who isn’t half the man he is.

What To Expect From Tonight’s GOP Debate

The first Republican primary debate will air Thursday evening on Fox News and will feature the top 10 polling candidates, with Donald Trump in a strong lead, as they field questions from moderators Bret Baier, Megyn Kelly, and Chris Wallace. Here’s what to expect during tonight’s debate:

How Campaigns Spend Their Money

The 2016 election cycle is shaping up to be the most expensive in American history, with most presidential candidates already having raised tens of millions of dollars for their respective campaigns. Here is a breakdown of just how that money is spent:

Details Of Obama’s Climate Change Plan

President Obama unveiled Monday a plan to increase the country’s clean power usage that many are calling the strongest action ever taken by a U.S. president to combat the effects of climate change. Here are some key details of Obama’s climate change plan

Revelations From Trump’s Financial Documents

Donald Trump made the financial disclosures this week required of all presidential candidates, divulging his job titles, assets, and other information in a 92-page report. Here are some things we learned about Trump in these documents

What’s Next For U.S.-Cuban Relations

After 54 years of closure, the U.S. embassy in Havana and the Cuban embassy in Washington, D.C. each began flying their flags once more this week, a symbol of the restored diplomatic ties between the two nations. Here is what we can expect from the relationship going forward

Candidate Profile: Scott Walker

Wisconsin governor Scott Walker formally announced Monday that he will run for the Republican nomination in the 2016 presidential election, bringing one of the frontrunners in early polls officially into the race. Here are some key facts to know about Walker
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I'm Such A Shitty Senator

I've been "serving" the great state of Montana in the U.S. Senate since 1978. You'll notice I put "serving" in quotes, because, let's face it, I suck. My wife has been pleading with me not to say this publicly, insisting that it's not true, that I'm a capable and dedicated public servant, blah, blah, blah. Bless her dear heart, but she's just being nice. Because, folks, I am telling you, I am hands-down the shittiest senator in the history of the Senate. The worst.

The other day, I was in my office, thumbing through some old pieces of legislation I'd either authored or co-sponsored. The whole time, I was thinking, "Christ, what a hack I am." Take my 1993 masterwork, S.915, the Semiconductor Investment Act. Section 2a of the bill states, "IN GENERAL–Section 168(e)(3)(A) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 (relating to three-year property) is amended by striking 'and' at the end of clause (i), by striking the period at the end of clause (ii), and by inserting at the end the following: '(iii) any semiconductor manufacturing equipment.'"

What the hell is that shit? As I recall, it had something to do with semiconductor manufacturing equipment. But you'd never know, what with the way I buried its meaning under a tidal wave of I-know-all-the-fancy-schmancy-bill-writing lingo. I was trying to look like Mr. Big Shot, but little did I know what a conceited ass I came off as. When the bill was pitched, Sen. Bob Packwood (R-OR) was nice enough to say some introductory words of support on the floor. But now I think he was just embarrassed for me and wanted to help a fellow senator save face, however little I deserved it. I forget what happened to that bill. Hopefully, it died without ever coming to a vote.

There's a huge stack of old bills in my office, each containing tons of that sort of hackwork. I'm tempted to burn down the entire Hart Office Building and cleanse the planet of every physical trace of my senatorial presence. But, no, that wouldn't do any good, because every facet, every aspect of my incredible suckiness is piledriven into the memories of those I so ineptly represent.

God. God. I am so, so, so sorry, folks.

Here's another stupid-ass thing I did. Every Wednesday, when the Senate is in session, I invite Montanans who happen to be in Washington to stop by my office to enjoy an informal breakfast with my staff and myself. It's a way for me to keep abreast of the needs of my constituents. A neat idea, right? Well, it would be, if I weren't actually there, fucking things up.

Anyway, one morning, this very nice woman named Shirley Besser, who is from my hometown of Helena, stopped by while vacationing in D.C. She wanted to know why I supported permanent normal trade relations with China, given its oppressive government and history of human-rights violations. I thought this was a good question, and I started to say, "Well, Sheila..." But, before I could say another word, she interrupted to point out that her name was Shirley. Stupid, son-of-a-bitch, no-listening-skills senator. She had just told me her name a second ago, and here I was, already forgetting it! I apologized profusely, but she just smiled politely and said it was okay. It wasn't.

Whether ladling too much stew onto the tray of a homeless person at a Missoula soup kitchen or making repeated mixed metaphors during a speech praising the efforts of those who fought Western wildfires last summer, I can't imagine why the people of Montana continue to put up with my crap.

I should just quit. Actually, I should have quit a long time ago. But I never did, because the people kept insisting I run for another term. I've been re-elected three times, and every time I am, I get the notion that maybe, if I made a real conscious effort, I could stop being such a lousy legislator.

I sometimes make an effort, but every time I do, before I know it, I've made another inexcusable flub like mentioning, during an appearance on Montana Politics Today, that the Gallatin Land Consolidation Act Of 1998 was introduced during the 104th Congress instead of the 105th. Christ on a crutch!

No, don't try to talk me out of it. I'm definitely quitting this time. I'm not sure what I'm going to do with myself once I leave the Senate, though. I can't go back to Montana, that's for sure. Facing all those constituents I failed so badly day after day, year after year? I don't think so. Maybe I'll go to Maine instead. No one knows me there. Set up a small law practice, hang my shingle, buy a quaint little saltbox on the outskirts of Bangor. Of course, I'm sure I'd somehow manage to fuck up everything there, too. What the hell was I thinking? God, I'm such a bonehead. I should go live in a cave somewhere, someplace far away from all humanity where I can't poison everything I touch.

So, people from the great state of Montana, forget you ever even heard the name Max Baucus. Max Baucus... more like Trash... Ruckus.

I can't even pun well.