Lately a lot of people have started to get worried that Mike Huckabee, suddenly the dark horse candidate for the Republican nominee for President of the United States, is going to win the nomination and then the Presidency because he actually manages to seem occasionally human and warm-blooded, and exudes “I would love to have a beer with him”-ness. (Which, incidentally, is not something any other country ever thinks about. Seriously, I voted for Jean Chretien’s Liberals on multiple occasions and I’m pretty sure Chretien himself would be kind of a pain in the ass to have a drink with. Also, he would probably strangle me.)
However, I am not going let you fret, my friends, because I am going to tell you something. Mike Huckabee will never, ever, ever be elected President of the United States. And you know why?
Because his last name is “Huckabee.”
Just say it to yourself for a moment. “President Huckabee.” It sounds like some cheap joke in a bad movie, like something Rob Reiner might direct ever since Rob Reiner started to really suck. It sounds like a name that might go with a local ice-cream magnate, or a charming local sheriff who can’t manage to catch plucky outlaws. It is the sort of last name that the screenwriters of Mr. Magorium’s Wonder Emporium rejected for the name character as “too undignified.” And it’s not simply that it’s not a standard, blandly American sort of last name like Jones or Smith or, yes, Bush. Barack Obama doesn’t have this problem, because his last name, while relatively exotic to the American character, still retains a powerful, stentorian character. “Huckabee,” on the other hand, just sounds downright silly.
(In fairness, Mike Huckabee is far from the first politician to have this problem. Paul Tsongas should never have run for President. Ditto Dick Gephardt, whose name manages to be both hard to figure out how to say and vaguely obscene-sounding once you say it, so of course he ran for President, what, twelve times? And let us not forget that Michael Dukakis’ name was so bad that he nearly lost the nomination to Jesse Jackson, of all people.)
Seriously, America: if you elect a man named “Huckabee” president, speaking for the entire rest of the world? We’re all going to be snickering at you.
Now, I know some people might say that this will only galvanize the right wing into electing him, but that’s not quite right. See, when the attitudes of the rest of the world usually stoke the nativist fires that breed inside certain types of Americans, it’s mostly because American actions, rightly or wrongly, are pissing off a lot of the rest of the world. Or because America is (or was) big and rich and powerful and other nations were envious. And that was fine by America, and well that it was, because so what if Spitting Image made fun of Reagan all the time? He still ended Communism! Or so people say.
But electing Mike Huckabee isn’t going to piss anybody off, and it’s definitely not going to make anybody envious. We’re just going to laugh. “Huckabee” will become a punchline without a joke. You know how you got sick of people saying “shag” after they saw Austin Powers because they thought it was funny? Well, “Huckabee” is going to be like that except twenty times worse and universal across the entire world. And you know it, and so does every other American, even if they don’t want to admit it, and nobody wants to be the butt of the world’s joke.
And that is why Mike Huckabee will never be President.