Gail Collins: A mid-year political pop quiz

Published: Thursday, Jul. 3, 2014 - 9:11 am

Happy July! Let’s see how well you can do on this Halfway Through the Year Political Quiz:

1. Chris Christie has spent several months wrestling with Bridgegate. One of the key players in the fiasco, David Wildstein, went to high school with the governor. Christie said that although they knew each other as teenagers …

A) “We had a different lunch period.”

B) “We didn’t travel in the same circles in high school. You know, I was the class president and athlete.”

C) “He did not sign my yearbook ‘Remember all the fun we had in detention hall.’”

D) “The story about us getting suspended for stealing traffic cones is greatly exaggerated.”

2. Rep. Paul Ryan gave a speech about the National School Lunch Program in which he said:

A) “I am a big fan of the lentil salads.”

B) “I propose we shut down the government until they bring back white bread.”

C) “Every time I see a fish stick it reminds me of the happy days I’ve spent noodling. Do you know about noodling? You stick your fist down a catfish’s throat and pull him out of the water.”

D) “What they’re offering people is a full stomach and an empty soul.”

3. The House majority leader, Eric Cantor, was unexpectedly defeated for re-election on a day …

A) When a fortuneteller had warned him to beware of college professors carrying books about Ayn Rand.

B) That he began at a Washington Starbucks, hosting a fundraising gathering for lobbyists.

C) When he promised his children that they would go noodling for catfish after the victory party.

D) When he awoke from a nightmare in which he was posing for photos at his polling place and realized he had forgotten to put on his pants.

4. Hillary Clinton got around $250,000 for giving a speech at the Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries convention. While she was talking someone …

A) Discovered that she had charged Friends of Composting only $200,000.

B) Threw a shoe at her.

C) Asked her if she was going to run for president. Clinton said that no one had ever brought that up before and that she probably would.

D) Presented her with an award for Most Different-Colored Pantsuits.

5. The Senate minority leader, Mitch McConnell, beat back tea party challenger Matt Bevin, whose terrible campaign included an appearance at a rally for cockfighting. In defense Bevin said:

A) Some of his best friends were roosters.

B) The founding fathers liked cockfighting.

C) He was trying to wean the crowd off the sport of kittenbaiting.

D) He had wandered in mistakenly while searching for the parking lot.

6. After the State of the Union speech, a TV reporter approached Rep. Michael Grimm of New York to ask about allegations that Grimm broke campaign finance laws. Grimm responded by:

A) Proposing that they talk instead about President Barack Obama’s remarks on income inequality.

B) Asking the reporter if he had ever stopped to enjoy the great view of the Capitol rotunda from the balcony where they were standing.

C) Threatening to throw the reporter over the balcony, then adding: “No, no, you’re not man enough. You’re not man enough. I’ll break you in half. Like a boy.”

D) Explaining that his real problems were pending indictments for hiring illegal immigrants to work at his restaurant and paying them under the table.

7. Former Massachusetts Sen. Scott Brown moved his residence to New Hampshire so he could run against Sen. Jeanne Shaheen. Asked whether the fact that he had not actually lived in New Hampshire since he was a year and a half old would be a problem, Brown replied:

A) “Look, everybody knows that a person’s brain develops mostly during the first year.”

B) “Do I have the best credentials? Probably not, ‘cause, you know, whatever.”

C) “Do you want to go for a ride in my truck? I have a really cool truck.”

D) “Is this New Hampshire? I thought I was running in Maine.”

8. The Republican nominee for the Senate in Iowa became famous for a video in which she bragged, “I grew up …

A) In a town where it was every girl’s dream to be crowned Miss Ethanol.”

B) Hoping that one day I would be able to make a difference and vote against Obamacare 60 times in a single year.”

C) Castrating hogs on an Iowa farm.”

D) Licking the butter cow at the state fair.”

9. George H.W. Bush sent out a fundraising letter for the Republican National Committee that began: “Friend, I don’t know what your guilty pleasures are in life but …

A) I like jumping out of airplanes.”

B) One of mine is napping.”

C) One of mine is socks.”

D) I enjoy siring presidential candidates.”

ANSWERS: 1-B, 2-D, 3-B, 4-B, 5-B, 6-C, 7-B, 8-C, 9-C.

Read more articles by Gail Collins



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