At this stage of the ballgame in a normal presidential election year, most political operatives would be enjoying a couple of weeks playing in the sand and surf before the real action starts later in the summer. In an understatement of the decade, this is hardly your normal presidential election year. Trials of one candidate and stumbling of the other have thus far replaced substantive debate on issues. Name-calling is quite prevalent, however, showcasing for the world the new norm in American politics.

With all that in mind, instead of texting or emailing each other acerbic comments about the upcoming battle for votes from the comfort of a 5-star resort, our favorite political operatives are once again breaking bread together in a dark corner of a Georgetown bistro. This time, however, they have both started lunch with potent potables instead of burgers and fries.

REPUBLICAN: What the heck are we going to do?

DEMOCRAT: Well, I’m not sure, but these martinis sure are tasty.

REP: They aren’t going to fix our problems, though.

DEM: Did I mention how tasty they are?

REP: How long have we been foisting candidates on the American public and swearing they’re the best thing to come along in 250 years of democracy?

DEM: A l-o-n-g time.

REP: Are we really going to continue to support our respective soon-to-be-nominees?

DEM: Seems so. By the way, yours is a convict.

REP: You love saying that don’t you?

DEM: It never gets old.

REP: Well, yours is a disoriented, confused old goat.

DEM: But not a convict.

REP:  Yet. The “Big Guy” remains suspect.

DEM: You can’t prove a thing.

REP: So, what happens if we just let things ride as they are? We nominate Trump, you nominate Biden.

DEM: I predict we’ll consume lots and lots of these see-through drinks we’re imbibing now.

REP: Exactly.

DEM: What, then, do you suggest as an alternative?

REP: I don’t know. I don’t suppose there’s any way we can just start over, is there?

DEM: Not likely.

REP: Well, are your people really going to be comfortable watching your guy on the campaign trail for the next four months?

DEM: His basement in Delaware is still available. What about your jailbird? How’s he going to rev up a crowd from Rikers?

REP: This IS a tasty martini.

DEM: Here’s a pipe dream: What if we could get both candidates to claim that for the good of the country, they are withdrawing their respective names for consideration before the nominative conventions?

REP: Hmmm. What is it the Bible says about it being easier to get a camel through the eye of a needle than a rich person to enter the Kingdom of God?

DEM: So, two chances of that happening – slim and none, eh?

REP: Basically. I mean, both these guys have tasted the fruit from the tree of power. Who wants to give that up?

DEM: What if we change the nominating rules?

REP: At this late date?

DEM: Hey, the NCAA does it all the time. Why can’t we?

REP: Go on. I’m listening.

DEM: Let’s say both sides claim that the primary voting machines malfunctioned in every state.

REP: We kind of tried that in 2020. Didn’t go so well.

DEM: No, no, hear me out. We plant the story with our media outlets, . . . and you plant the same one with yours.

REP: Tell them it’s an exclusive.

DEM: Right. Good thinking. That would make our talking heads scream at your talking heads and your talking heads scream at ours. Pretty soon, nobody knows who started the ball rolling on this, and everybody is up in arms.

REP: I know just who to call.

DEM: Me too.

REP: Then what?

DEM: The way I see it, when the brouhaha is at its zenith, we have some heavy-hitters from both sides ride to the rescue, step in, and appeal to sanity.

REP: For the good of the country.

DEM: That’s the ticket.

REP: Whom did you have in mind as the calvary?

DEM: Well, we’ve got some ex-presidents and you’ve got one of those.

REP: Oh, how I miss Ronald Reagan.

DEM: Yeah, well, he’s not available. But maybe we get a bi-partisan statement written up for our knights in shining armor that pleads with both parties to open up their conventions and randomly choose delegates to attend.

REP: It’s tricky, but it could work.

DEM: The only problem might be if both conventions still end up nominating the same guys.

REP: Well, in that case, the American public deserves what it gets.

DEM: Harsh, but true.

REP: Worth a shot.

DEM: Indeed. Speaking of which . . . waiter, another round here please. And keep ’em coming.

©MMXXIV. William J. Lewis, III – Freelance Writer