Monday, November 03, 2008

The morning after the night before

Barack Obama is the favourite to win the US general election tomorrow, but what will be the mood if he does? And what if he doesn't? Five writers imagine what might happen next

Guardian America

Harry Shearer

November 5, 2008, was the best of times and the worst of times for Senator John McCain. Eking out a surprise electoral-college victory in the presidential election he was favoured to lose, McCain was taking a victory lap around his Sedona, Arizona, compound when, complaining of chest pains, he texted his wife Cindy. What turned out to be his final message was: "Sell Budweiser stock."

Within hours, vice-president-elect Sarah Palin was being sworn in as president-elect, a peculiar ceremony, since the new president doesn't take office until January 20. Still, the theatrics at Anchorage's IceDome were impressive. The cast of Disney's Polar Bears on Ice skated a specially choreographed number to a disco-ised version of Hall & Oates' Sarah Smile, after which president-elect Palin signed a premature proclamation according full rights to the unborn, including the right to vote. Early interwomb polls that evening gave Palin a huge lead in the 2012 election.

• Harry Shearer provides the voice for Mr Burns and other characters on the Simpsons. He is the author of the novel Not Enough Indians.


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