Manchester, N.H. — An anonymous billionaire shook up a paint-peelingly boring GOP primary race in New Hampshire today when he or she announced plans to release millions of dollars in Citizens-United-approved slush money to the campaign of the candidate who most aggressively takes up the fight to stop climate change.
Scarcely before the press conference had ended, GOP candidates scrambled to capture the climate spotlight. Presumptive nominee and Stone Phillips lookalike (if you squint) Mitt Romney backpedaled with tepid enthusiasm to previous positions in support of climate change. Analysts noted that the frontrunner had the least to lose.
“Look, I have no problem giving the pink slip to climate change,” he said. “I like to be able to fire the climate that provides the weather around me. People, too.”
Romney made no mention of praise from Al Gore for his previous climate-fighting stance, but some trailing candidates attempted to trot out allies from greener periods in their political history. Newt Gingrich invited Nancy Pelosi to join him via video conference for a live reenactment of their “We” campaign video from 2008. Pelosi declined, but “the show must go on,” said Gingrich. Pelosi was instead played by a handsomely compensated Jessica Walter. (An insider reports Gingrich spent remaining angel-investor campaign funds to fly the original couch from D.C. to New Hampshire.)
In front of a packed audience at the Chubb Theater in Concord, N.H., Gingrich launched into a spirited reenactment. After, Gingrich donned pith helmet and magnifying glass, inviting the audience to join him outside as he led them through a “paleontological journey of wonder” while searching for signs of climate change in the Earth’s crust.
Texas governor and electoral caboose Rick Perry took a break from shooting rats with Alton, N.H.’s Boy Scout troop #473 to issue a raft of cryptically misinformed and off-message campaign promises that began with a spittle-strewn rant about “drilling the sun and fracking the wind” and ended in a vow to “go commando” in preparation for a warming climate.
“It’s what I did during crippling fires that surrounded my capitol … so it’s the least I can do for the country. That’s how we do in Texas,” he told a wide-eyed crowd of reporters and Scout leaders as they backed slowly away toward a bank of waiting Dodge Caravans.
Of the candidates, only surge-drunk former Pennsylvania congressman Rick Santorum rejected the money out of hand, maintaining his theory that global warming was a radical leftist religious plot and that he was “this close” to calling Dan Brown. Radiating confidence from his razor-thin second-place finish in Iowa, he ignored most climate questions while picking at the mysterious symbols on a fist-sized ruby ring he allegedly “borrowed” from Pope Benedict XVI.
On the margins of the race, strategies took a turn for the bizarre. In an attempt to continue capitalizing on his surprising youth popularity, Ron Paul chose to remain mum on his denier-leaning views and instead chose to curry favor by hosting a concert featuring the Minneapolis rap group Atmosphere.
“I’m not sure about all this warming, but I do know one thing that’s hot: This rap, yo,” he said while feebly ‘raising the roof.’ He noted that he’d be open to scoring future campaign commercials with Atmosphere tracks “Makeshift Patriot” and “Americareful.” Nearby, a dreadlocked former Occupier wearing one-piece jumpsuit/ravewear had to be evacuated for what paramedics later diagnosed as “excessive swooning.”
Jon Huntsman, a former climate leader in the Republican field whose star diminished when he backpedaled to match his competition, sought to recapture climate-crowd attention in the manner in which he first gained it: with a flurry of simple Tweets.
“To be clear. I did this first. Like, for realsies. With the climate thing. They’re copycats. No fair!”
“To be clear. My squishy hedge I said was like a joke. Ha ha ha! Amirite, guys? Guys?”
“To be clear. I believe in evolution and trust scientists on global warming. Call me crazy. Again. Please. Anybody?”
Late in the day, when no clear winner had emerged, a spokesperson for the clandestine Richie Rich remarked that they planned to open the competition to all political parties. President Obama took to the Rose Garden late in the day to address the developments.
“Hey, uh — that pipeline thing,” he said. “That’s gotta count for something, right?”