April 22, 2004

GOREMORPHING (via John):

Kerry Says His 'Family' Owns SUV, Not He (AP, April 23, 2004)

Does John Kerry, who supports higher automobile fuel economy standards, own a gas-guzzling SUV? He does, but says it belongs to the family, not to him.

During a conference call Thursday with reporters to discuss his upcoming jobs tour through West Virginia, Pennsylvania, Ohio and Michigan, the Democratic presidential candidate was asked whether he owned a Chevrolet Suburban. [...]

Kerry thought for a second when asked whether his wife, Teresa Heinz Kerry, had a Suburban at their Ketchum, Idaho, home. Kerry said he owns and drives a Dodge 600 and recently bought a Chrysler 300M. He said his wife owns the Chevrolet SUV.

"The family has it. I don't have it,'' he said.

Posted by Orrin Judd at April 22, 2004 11:56 PM
Comments

The guy has really got some flaws. His very presents as a potential world leader is flawed. TW

Posted by: Tom Wall at April 23, 2004 1:49 AM

This just made clear to me another area where Kerry is going to have trouble with the average voter.
Most people can look at the Bushes and recognize something similar to their own marriage. Kerry? I don't know what the hell kind of relationship he and the ketchup queen have, but the little details that creep out are strange. These are sorts of things people key in on without even knowing it.

Posted by: Jason Johnson at April 23, 2004 1:59 AM

This just made clear to me another area where Kerry is going to have trouble with the average voter.
Most people can look at the Bushes and recognize something similar to their own marriage. Kerry? I don't know what the hell kind of relationship he and the ketchup queen have, but the little details that creep out are strange. These are sorts of things people key in on without even knowing it.

Posted by: Jason Johnson at April 23, 2004 1:59 AM

Next question: Do you ride in it?

Gotta give the guy credit. He replied to a trivial, stupid question with an even more trivial stupid answer.

Posted by: Harry Eagar at April 23, 2004 2:13 AM

But isn't that really the point, Harry. He's so locked into East coast, faux-left, limosine liberalism that he felt the need to spin owming a Chevy suburban.

Posted by: David Cohen at April 23, 2004 7:33 AM

Oh, is all part of that sophisticated, nuanced outlook he brings to every issue, including fighting hard to raise CAFE standards, never admitting that in battleground-Michigan, and delivering real solutions to energy economics by abrogating the laws of supply and demand and replacing them with the laws of "jawboning". Why didn't he just say: I don't own an SUV but I know lots of peoplpe who do.

Posted by: MG at April 23, 2004 7:53 AM

The main thing here is: What kind of poliician dumps off ownership of an SUV on his wife, Earth Day or not? If your wife's driving one of those teeny-tiny, cute little chick cars, or if she works for Mary Kay and has one of those pink Cadillacs, you might want to give her credit of ownership if only for the sake of male ego; this on the other hand comes across like some kid being caught borrowing mom and dad's vehicle and trying to blame his sister for concocting the whole scheme.

Kerry wants everyone to think he's a tough Vietnam veteran, but the solider he's looking more and more like is a cross between the Brahman elite monied snobbery of Charles Emerson Winchester and the sniveling weasliness of Frank Burns from M*A*S*H.

Posted by: John at April 23, 2004 9:14 AM

IMHO he's more like Lieutenant Neidermeyer.

Posted by: AML at April 23, 2004 9:27 AM

"Some of my best friends own SUVs..."

Posted by: Roy Jacobsen at April 23, 2004 9:39 AM

Roy:

We even own a Suburban. My question is what kind of poof-dart would claim it's his wife's and not his?

Posted by: oj at April 23, 2004 9:43 AM

Sounds postiively Clintonesque without the rogue's charm.

Posted by: pchuck at April 23, 2004 11:11 AM

Well, we have two cars, mine and hers. My car is a Toyota Sienna minivan. Hers is a Subaru Impreza WRX with turbo. However, that does get me the comment "where did you get a wife like that?" when I bring it up. Her previous car was a '93 Ford Probe and let me tell you, the claim that it "stuck to curves like burnt eggs on a griddle" was true, as she demonstrated to me in the hills of North Carolina one day when we were late to a wedding. I suppose this means that none of you would vote for me.

Posted by: Annoying Old Guy at April 23, 2004 11:13 AM

The Wife cashed in the minivan for the Suburban because she was embarrassed to be seen driving it. Of course, I can barely crouch low enough to fit in her Subaru.

Posted by: oj at April 23, 2004 11:19 AM

The Chrysler 300M is a fine vehicle. I own one and drive it to work every day. But I have my eye on a Ford F-250, like the President keeps at his ranch in Crawford. I have a modest house in the suburbs and virtually no use for a big pickup, but I *want* one.

And I'll bet 80% of American men feel exactly the same way.

Posted by: Random Lawyer at April 23, 2004 11:45 AM

>Brahman elite monied snobbery of Charles Emerson
>Winchester and the sniveling weasliness of Frank
>Burns from M*A*S*H.

Actually, Winchester was a pretty decent guy under the snobbery, and a dedicated and skilled surgeon. Not too likeable, but honest and highly competent.

Frank Burns, on the other hand, was pond scum pure and simple.

Incidentally, I drive a 91 Honda Civic. Paid cash for it, no auto loan.

Posted by: Ken at April 23, 2004 12:45 PM

All I can say is...

Ya want some syrup with that, Mr Kerry?

Posted by: Chris B at April 23, 2004 12:51 PM

David, if the point is, triviality rules -- and that's looking more and more like what it is -- then I guess you're right.

Posted by: Harry Eagar at April 23, 2004 2:06 PM

Of course triviality rules--they're journalists. You think any of them are going to ask him about stuff that matters, like his support for abortion violating his putative Catholicism?

Posted by: oj at April 23, 2004 2:11 PM

Actually, Winchester was a pretty decent guy under the snobbery, and a dedicated and skilled surgeon. Not too likeable, but honest and highly competent.

Frank Burns, on the other hand, was pond scum pure and simple.

But looking back from today, you gotta admit Burns was spot-on in his opinion about the U.N. ...

Posted by: John at April 23, 2004 2:51 PM

Frank Burns and Colonel Flagg were the heroes of the series, just as Archie Bunker was of All in the Family.

Posted by: oj at April 23, 2004 3:00 PM

Harry:

"Senator Kerry, do you own an SUV?"

"Yes, Teresa and I use one in Idaho to get through the snow."

How hard is that? After all, this is a guy who used his Earth Day speech to boast about how tough he'd be on OPEC to lower gas prices.

Now, obviously, this is trivial and he couldn't give an answer to this question that would change many votes. But why is he flopping around like this on trivia? And what's he going to do when the campaign actually starts and the questions aren't trivial?

Posted by: David Cohen at April 23, 2004 3:58 PM

I keep saying that Kerry will get up to speed, but I'm really starting to wonder. It has been SO long since the guy had any kind of tough race at all. Why not just say you own an SUV and be done with it?

Yes, this is trivial. But much nastier and more substantive issues are starting to crop up. So far, for instance, Kerry has made a hash of explaining his anti-military statements of the seventies and his wife's refusal to release her income tax returns. The media, though populated mostly by ideological soulmates of Kerry, is not going to let these issues go.

The guy has squandered a significant lead against Bush in the polls and fallen back into at best a tie. He's got to start giving better, sharper answers.

Posted by: Casey Abell at April 23, 2004 4:09 PM

Casey:

Unless there's a sudden Depression he loses by double digits anyway.

Posted by: oj at April 23, 2004 4:25 PM

David, there's always the option of responding to a reporter by telling him, "Blow it out your ear, Jack!"

Reporters ask the questions they think their readers want answered.

Posted by: Harry Eagar at April 23, 2004 4:49 PM

What amazes me (sometimes) is that more politicians don't whip the press now and then. Harry has a point - back in 1988, Bush Sr. scored more points by firing right back at Dan Rather than just about any other time for him.

But in Kerry's case, he would come across like he was talking to a bad waiter. He just can't win.

Posted by: jim hamlen at April 23, 2004 9:17 PM

Ken:

I drove a 1993 Honda Civic DX hatchback for ten years. I'm driving a Hyundai Accent GL sedan now (due to the price and warranty). I'd have gotten another Civic if they'd have been able to compete with the Koreans price-wise.

Posted by: Joe at April 23, 2004 11:48 PM
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