Well, here we are, drifting into the inevitable, boring halftime show of this never-ending political season: The primaries are over (thank God), the second-half players are finally set, but it’s still way too early to get worked up about the outcome of the chaotic electoral scrimmage to come. But hey, we’re not complaining—it provides us political dipsomaniacs with a welcome breather, and allows us to take a moment and savor our favorite unguarded quips of campaigns past. And so, without further ado, we invite you to join us for a fond look back, while also testing your intimate knowledge of Virginia’s most loquacious (and entertaining) politicos and prognosticators. And remember: No cheating! (Unless you’re Eliot Spitzer or Kwame Kilpatrick, of course.)
Brand-aid: Tom Davis laments the shaggy Republican label.
1) After (barely) securing a victory in the Republican senatorial primary, former governor Jim Gilmore compared his Democratic opponent Mark Warner to what voracious beast?
a) “A bloodthirsty black bear.”
b) “A rabid woodchuck.”
c) “A hungry piranha.”
d) “A fat, waxy white tick.”
2) U.S. Representative Tom Davis, who had once hoped to run for retiring Senator John Warner’s seat his own self, groused to The Washington Post in March that “the House Republican brand is so bad right now that…”
a) “we couldn’t sell beef jerky to the Donner Party.”
b) “if it were a dog food, they’d take it off the shelf.”
c) “Larry Craig is threatening to switch to the Green Party.”
d) “we’re making New Coke look like a masterstroke.”
3) In his new book, A Time to Fight, Senator Jim Webb boldly claims to be “the only person in the history of Virginia elected to statewide office with…”
a) “a Union card, two Purple Hearts, and three tattoos.”
b) “a concealed carry permit, two ex-wives, and three illegitimate children.”
c) “a National Book Award, two unremoved sniper bullets, and three missing toes.”
d) “a Class B trucker’s license, two gold teeth, and three drifters stacked like cordwood in my basement.”
4) When asked by a local Colorado paper to describe the difference between his current Senate candidate, Bob Schaffer, and former employer George Allen, campaign manager Dick Wadhams had what to say?
a) “Well, at least Bob knows what a video camera looks like.”
b) “I just told him, ‘No cowboy boots, no comedy, and if you see someone with a healthy tan, keep your mouth shut.’”
c) “Look, macaca happens, O.K.?”
d) “There’s only one idiot named George Allen.”
5) Speaking to reporters about the electoral prospects of Barack Obama, Virginia’s first lady Anne Holton promised that, if elected, the Democratic presidential nominee would be what?
a) “The first mulatto president.”
b) “The first Hawaiian president.”
c) “The first woman president.”
d) “The first drop-dead-gorgeous president.”
6) Upon being informed that the Virginia representative he wanted to interview, the Honorable Jo Ann Davis, had succumbed to breast cancer nearly a month earlier, what was the dim-witted Congressional Quarterly reporter’s reply?
a) “Is that a no?”
b) “Did she leave a forwarding number?”
c) “Oh. Could you take a message, just in case?”
d) “Hmm. Guess I’ll have to go with my second choice, Strom Thurmond.”
Answers: 1. c; 2. b; 3. a; 4. d; 5. c; 6. a