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Bartlett For President

Discussion in 'Anything goes' started by alleyallen, Jun 20, 2006.

  1. alleyallen

    alleyallen Guest

    On Easter, I was given the first season of The West Wing by my dad, my girlfriend gave me season five for my birthday, and I think as a late B-day present from my dad, I may be getting season two. Obviously I'm a fan of the show.

    My dad, who's a poli-sci major and fan, started watching the series with me last week. A question I'm going to pose to him tonight, and one I'd like to pose to the board now, is how do you think Jed Bartlett would have fared against W. Bush in a hypothetical race in 2000 (or 2004)?

    Seriously, if Bartlett had been a real pol, how do you think he would have done? And would he have been the kind of president you would have been willing to work for (or with)? As liberal as he was, he was also very religious and conservative in many ways. But he always tempered his spirituality when it came to the management of the country (i.e., allowing a federal inmate to be executed).
  2. PopeDirkBenedict

    PopeDirkBenedict Active Member

    I think Karl Rove would do his typical number on Bartlet -- an egghead liberal governor from New England is pretty much what the doctor ordered for Rove. The debates would obviously have been interesting -- although I could easily see a repeat of the first 2000 debate where Bartlet wins on points, but comes on so strong that Bush ends up looking better for it. The Bartlet re-election campaign against Ritchie was basically the liberal fantasy of a tough Stevenson kicking Bush's ass across the stage. I think Bush/Bartlet 2000 would have been a nail-biter, but Bartlet probably wins in 04 because he would have had a coherent plan about the Iraq war.
  3. SCEditor

    SCEditor Active Member

    If Ainsley Hayes is involved, I'm voting for Barlett.

    Seriously, a Democrat from New England who is Catholic. ... Didn't that guy just lose in 2004? Bartlett wouldn't have won in 2000, because he would have never beaten Hoynes. But had he beaten Hoynes, he would have never carried Texas (Hoynes brought Texas, but Bush would have had it) and a lot of the strengths Hoynes had as VP would have been overshadowed by Bush's popularity.

    In 2004, Bartlett wouldn't have won, because the War in Iraq was the big focus point. Now if Kerry, who actually served in a war couldn't win, what makes you think a Nobel Prize winner in Economics upends Bush?

    Bartlett wouldn't have won either. And I say that as a Bartlett and West Wing fan.
  4. alleyallen

    alleyallen Guest

    Good point SC ... especially with regards to 2004 and the Democratic candidate.

    As an aside, did Sorkin ever mention who he modeled Bartlett after? I know parts of it were from Andrew Shepherd in The American President, but certainly Bartlett had more depth.
  5. PopeDirkBenedict

    PopeDirkBenedict Active Member

    Basically, Bartlet was a mixture of the best qualities of the past few Dem presidents: Clinton's smarts, Carter's humanity, LBJ's political skills and JFK's oratory.
  6. alleyallen

    alleyallen Guest

    As another aside, if you read Doonesbury during the early Clinton years, there's a White House staffer named ... Josh Lyman. Wonder if he played any part in the development of the Josh we know.
  7. JayFarrar

    JayFarrar Well-Known Member

    Josiah "Jed" Bartlett is modeled after Josiah Bartlett, the 1776 version who signed the Declaration, top name on the last leg of sigs.
    The then-Bartlett was from New Hampshire and a doctor and a judge who died in 1795.
    I seem to remember an interview that said Bartlett was modeled after Howard Dean with a bit of Dukakis and Kennedy mixed in. Regardless, Sorkin did his homework. Created a character with a backstory that stretched back hundreds of years.
  8. PopeDirkBenedict

    PopeDirkBenedict Active Member

    Sorkin modeled Bartlet after Dean when Dean was still an obsecure governor?
  9. alleyallen

    alleyallen Guest

    Maybe not modeled after Dean, but Bartlett was still an obscure governor, despite having been in Congress for several years.
  10. SCEditor

    SCEditor Active Member

    That I did not know. That's pretty cool about the Doonesbury connection.

    On a completely unrelated West Wing note, I just watched the episode in the third season (can't remember the title or which episode it was), but it's when Bartlett pretends not to see the camera on during an interview and he says Ritchie is "a .22-caliber mind in a .357 magnum world." (I'm sure I got the guns wrong). Truly a great episode, all the way to the end when C.J. asks the president if he did it on purpose, he just looks at her and she says, "That was old-school."

    Do you think I should see somebody if I watch a West Wing episode or two every day? I'm thinking I have some type of addiction problem.
  11. alleyallen

    alleyallen Guest

    No problem in my book, SC. I think it's thought provoking because their liberal stance sometimes challenges even my sensibilities in certain areas.
  12. HejiraHenry

    HejiraHenry Well-Known Member

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