Humor on the Trail.
The Lighter Side, This and That...
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1. Route 66
2. So Happy Together
3. Louie Louie
4. When a Man Loves a Woman
5. My Cherie Amore
6. Surfin' USA
7. Cherish
8. Eight Days A Week
9. Take Me To The River
10. American Pie
11. Both Sides Now
12. When You're a Jet
13. Jet Plane
14. Stairway to Heaven
Copyright Greg Simon.  All rights reserved.  Reprinted by permission on Democracy in Action's P2000. 
Greg Simon served as Gore's singing senior advisor on the plane during the fall campaign.  He wrote at least 45 different songs during this period, drawing on happenings and daily life on the campaign trail.  The songs, performed "not quite to the tune of" various popular hits, were intended to help lighten and improve relations with the travelling press corps.  Lyrics such as "Our cherie press corps, Intrepid as the day is long" and "Al Gore loves your children, Loves your grandma too, If you need a  lockbox, He'll make one just for you" offer amusing insights on the campaign.  Simon joined Gore's staff in March 1991 as legislative director; he was Gore's issues director during the 1992 campaign, and served as Gore's chief domestic policy adviser until 1997, when he left to start a consulting firm.  He is a cellist and former rock musician.

The Riverside Pumpkin Fest and Official Central Wisconsin Pumpkin Weigh-in took place Oct. 7, 2000 in Nekoosa, south of Wisconsin Rapids. Chicago artist Steven Dahlke carved Gore and Bush likenesses in two of the 500-pound giants (Gore is on the left and Bush on the right).  The giant pumpkins were displayed at Altenburg's Country Gardens, Harold Altenburg's you-pick farm three miles east of Wisconsin Rapids.  Visitors to the farm voted through Oct. 31, 2000; there was also voting through the Wisconsin Rapids Area Convention & Visitors Bureau web site.  Bush won both polls.
Courtesy of Casey Lake--Wisconsin Rapids Daily Tribune

The University of Wisconsin-Green Bay Athletics Department and Baylake Bank created a huge "Candidates in the Corn" maze which opened to the public on Aug. 19, 2000 and remained open until late October.  Based on a drawing by Green Bay Press Gazette cartoonist Joe Heller, the maze was located in a 1,200-foot long, 17-acre corn field at 2260 Bay Settlement Road, off Highway 54-57 in northeast Green Bay.  A maze master in a 20-foot high tower located in the top of Gore's tie kept watch over the maze; those who managed to get lost amid the 4.75 miles of paths and 80 different choices could wave the white flag to signal for help. The star was the starting point and a meeting place.  Preparation started in June under the direction of UW-Green Bay geography professor Bill Niedzwiedz; GPS was used to plot the maze.  Admission cost $7 for adults and $4 for children, with proceeds going to scholarships in athletics.  This was the third year for the maze; previous designs used the school logo and a cow.
Courtesy UW-Green Bay Athletics Department. 
Photo by Roemer Photography.

In April 2000 the Weekly World News scored a dramatic reporting coup with this exclusive report. 

Al Franken.  Jan. 12, 1999.  WHY NOT ME? The Inside Story of the Making and Unmaking of the Franken Presidency.  Delacorte Press.
--Franken chose Joe Lieberman first--

Joel Achenbach.  April 9, 2001.  IT LOOKS LIKE A PRESIDENT ONLY SMALLER: Trailing Campaign 2000.  New York: Simon & Schuster.

Odds and Ends
The White House Project, a nonprofit, nonpartisan effort to encourage women to seek the presidency and other leadership positions, joined with Mattel and Girls' Inc. to launch Barbie for PresidentRin May 2000.  The doll, available in African-American, Latina, and Caucasian races, comes with a Girls' Action Agenda.  Podium not included.

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In addition to the consultants, vendors, broadcasters and others who make money directly off the presidential campaign, a few intrepid businesses seek to tie in with presidential campaign-themed products and events...

At the start of the campaign, when it appeared Tennessee might have three candidates in the running, the Jack Daniel's Distillery in Lynchburg, TN put up three barrels of whiskey: Al, Fred and Lamar (Vice President Al Gore, Sen. Fred Thompson and former Gov. Lamar Alexander).  The barrels were to come of age in time for the inauguration.


Nutfield Brewing Company of Derry, NH launched "Primary Pale Ale" in June 1999.


Courtesy of Nutfield Brewing Company
Artwork Created by D.K. Higgins Illustration, Londonderry, NH

Background: Primary Pale Ale, Nutfield Brewing Company's tribute to New Hampshire's first in the nation Presidential Primary, was a thirst-quenching ale with a slight fruity aroma.  "This golden-colored, light-bodied ale finishes dry to keep you coming back to New Hampshire for more," the brewer said.  The ale was distributed in several of the southern New Hampshire area restaurants from mid-January through the end of February of 2000.

Nutfield Brewery produced approximately 600 cases of Primary Pale Ale, and about 20 1/2 barrel kegs for this "limited edition" ale.  This line of ale was also chosen to be served in Washington DC at a special dinner at the Reagan Center touted as the "New Hampshire Presidential Primary Gala Dinner" on June 30, 1999. Primary Pale Ale was then showcased at the 1999 Smithsonian Folklife Festival in Washington D.C.

In 1996, when Bob Dole was campaigning for the presidency, Nutfield had just released its second line of ales called "Old Man Ale," named in honor of New Hampshire's oldest resident, the Old Man of the Mountain.  Dole was scheduled to visit, but his campaign committee didn't like the idea of holding a televised event at the brewery while it was releasing a product that could be linked to Dole's age.  Word leaked out at the governor's office that the campaign committee sought to cancel Dole's visit, but the governor insisted they continue on with the set itinerary.

Dobles, a Manchester, NH car dealer, ran an ad parodying Ross Perot in late Jan. 2000, before the primary.

Captain Morgan for President 2000--Joseph E. Seagram & Sons, Inc. launched the Captain Morgan for President 2000 campaign for its Original Spiced Rum in Feb. 2000 at the National Press Club in Washington, DC.  Political strategist James Carville served as campaign manager.  The campaign had a visible presence in Philadelphia for the Republican National Convention and in Los Angeles for the Democratic National Convention.  It ended with Captain Morgan dropping out of the race on Nov. 1.
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America Greetings produced a line of 12 Cam*PAIN 2000 greeting cards.
"It's time to kick a little Republican/Democratic butt!"  In Sept. 2000 American Greetings introduced a line of 12 Cam*PAIN 2000 cards, six targeted at Gore and six at Bush, designed to provide "a humorous escape from election year burnout."  Steve Kyle, American Greetings program manager, stated in a release that the cards "take aim at the lighter side of politics by lampooning the candidates and having some fun with the public's perception of them."  The cards played off facets of the candidates' images including Gore's woodenness and Bush's intelligence.  One card showed Gore with a Christmas tree and the "See this? Now this is a tree!"  Another card had Bush seeking a "lifeline" to answer a $100 question on the "Who Wants to be a Millionaire" television program.  American Greetings also produced political humor cards in 1992 and 1996.
Courtesy of American Greetings, Cleveland, Ohio.  Cards are no longer available.

A TV ad for Energizer® batteries from mid-Sept. 2000, developed for the Eveready Battery Company, Inc. by TBWA\Chiat\Day in Los Angeles, featured the Energizer Bunny® marching through fictional candidate Bob Fremgen's ad.

Mars, Incorporated's "Voting Booth" ad for Snickers® from Oct. 2000 brought some laughs to viewers.  A man enters a voting booth.  Small cartoon Republican elephant/Bush and Democratic donkey/Gore figures take up positions on his shoulders and start engaging in some ridiculous back and forth.  After a while the narrator says, "Not going anywhere for a while--grab a Snickers."  $


I remember the rocky coast of Maine and the mill towns there and one of those Maine-landers who stood up early in our time there and said, "I like what you have to say Mr. Ashbrook, but what about your low name ID?"  John Ashcroft, Jan. 5, 1999, in announcing he would not run for president

I remember well having gone to Ames after I voted against one of the budget fiascoes in the United States Congress where they piled the pork in so heavy that you couldn't see the substance, and I wanted to assuage or provide some sense of humor to release the tension in the audience so I said, "Folks you know it's well known that if you like sausage or the law you shouldn't watch either one being made [laughter].  And the fellow jumped up on the back row and said, 'Not so fast!'"  And I said, "What's the problem?"  And he said, "I'm a sausage maker and I resent that."  He said, "I know what's in my sausage."John Ashcroft, Jan. 5, 1999, in announcing he would not run for president

Editorial Cartoons (Daryl Cagle)
Doonesbury's Duke 2000
Comedy Central's "Indecision 2000"
Al  | All Gore   | Not the Bush Campaign Headquarters
Late Night Jokes (  |  Center for Media and Public Affairs' "Joke Watch"
Draft Michael Jordan for President
Harrison Ford for President
Muckians for 2000
BINGO For President
Transcendental Biographies