10 Most Absurd Moments of the 2012 Campaign

1) Oops. During a GOP primary debate in November 2011, Rick Perry struggled to name the three federal agencies he would eliminate as president. “Commerce, Education, and the — what’s the third one there?


2) Ex-gay. Throughout the campaign, Michele Bachmann refused to comment on allegations that her husband’s Christian counseling clinics instruct gay patients that they could change his sexual orientation through therapy and prayer. Marcus Bachmann had previously referred to gays as ”barbarians”:

3) Invisible Obama. In what was a poorly kept “surprise” appearance, actor/director Clint Eastwood delivered a bizarre speech at the Republican National Convention in Tampa, during which he spoke to an empty chair with an invisible Obama:

4) $10,000. During a GOP presidential debate in December 2011, Romney responded to Rick Perry’s claim that the he had advocated for a federal mandate to purchase health care coverage by trying to wager $10,000:

5) Marriage is like… While campaigning in Iowa, Rick Santorum repeatedly compared marriage equality to a napkin, not a paper towelwater, not beertea, not basketballa tree, not a car:

6) I am America. The classic Herman Cain ad features chief of staff Mark Block blowing smoke into the camera, Cain smiling, and the ballot “I Am America”:

7) Moon colony. In a speech ahead of Florida’s GOP presidential primary, Newt Gingrich made a bold pledge to establish a permanent U.S. base on the moon “by the end of my second term”:

8) Binders full of women. During the second presidential debate, Romney falsely claimed that he initiated a study to seek “binders full of women” to fill leadership roles in his administration as the governor of Massachusetts:

9) Romnesia. President Obama unveiled a new line of attack against Mitt Romney during a campaign stop at George Mason University in October, arguing that the GOP presidential candidate — who has changed his views on key policy issues — suffers from Romnesia, a condition that causes one to forget their past statements and beliefs:

10) Work out. An October issue of Time magazine featured several pictures of Paul Ryan — who is known for following the P90X workout plan — pumping iron in a grey shirt and backwards baseball cap:

Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. AlterNet’s journalists work tirelessly to counter the traditional corporate media narrative. We’re here seven days a week, 365 days a year. And we’re proud to say that we’ve been bringing you the real, unfiltered news for 20 years—longer than any other progressive news site on the Internet.

It’s through the generosity of our supporters that we’re able to share with you all the underreported news you need to know. Independent journalism is increasingly imperiled; ads alone can’t pay our bills. AlterNet counts on readers like you to support our coverage. Did you enjoy content from David Cay Johnston, Common Dreams, Raw Story and Robert Reich? Opinion from Salon and Jim Hightower? Analysis by The Conversation? Then join the hundreds of readers who have supported AlterNet this year.

Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Help ensure AlterNet remains independent long into the future. Support progressive journalism with a one-time contribution to AlterNet, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you. Click here to donate by check.

DonateDonate by credit card

Close

Don't Sit on the Sidelines of History. Join Alternet All Access and Go Ad-Free. Support Honest Journalism.