Friday, July 09, 2004

Aaron Burr Was John Kerry's First Choice for VP 

John Edwards Was Actually Kerry's Fourth Pick

NEW YORK (Ant Farmer's Almanac Newswire) The New York Post has published an article claiming that presumptive Democratic presidential candidate John Kerry's first choice for a running mate was not, as previously reported, John McCain, Richard Gephardt or John Edwards but former vice president, Democratic party co-founder, political schemer, adventurer, killer of Alexander Hamilton and all-around cad-about-town, the very late Aaron Burr.

Still stinging with embarrassment from its erroneous headline declaring Richard Gephardt as Kerry's running mate the same day Kerry announced that his choice was John Edwards, the story about Burr is on the editorial page, perhaps to shield it from the kind of scrutiny and fact-checking that a "news" story gets. Indeed, the article glosses over the central fact that Aaron Burr has been dead for 168 years, with only passing mention made of the ". . . DNA gathering, cutting edge cloning science and technology and Photoshopping . . ." necessary for his appearance on a Kerry ticket.

The story focuses instead on Burr's assets and liabilities as a candidate. On the plus side, the Post finds Burr's ". . . experience, personal charm and first-hand knowledge of what the Founding Fathers really meant by stuff . . ." to be a boost for the Dems. The downside is Burr's long list of political, financial and personal scandals. He was accused of treason in the U.S., thrown out of England while there in exile and, of course, shot and killed Alexander Hamilton, ". . .even after Hamilton had fired into the air, gentleman that he was, believing that Burr would do likewise, thereby settling the dispute in a non-lethal way. He was mistaken, as Burr was, then as now, no gentleman." That and, as the paper reminds its readers, he's been dead since 1836, and would face a sharp learning curve about current events and probably smell awful.

Despite the original New York Post being founded in 1800 by Alexander Hamilton, the paper's editors insist they ". . . have no axe to grind with his cold-blooded, blackhearted assassin", and that their opinions are based solely on the facts as they see them and what they remember about him from Gore Vidal's 1973 historical novel Burr.

When approached for a comment about the story, a spokesman for the Kerry campaign stared blankly at this reporter and asked, "Who are you? How did you get in here?"

Aides close to Dick Cheney reported his disappointment at the lost prospect of facing off with Aaron Burr in Vice Presidential debates, and quote him as saying, "I'd have f***ing wasted him".

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