Monday, April 23, 2018
Opinion

For Connie Mack, it's good to be the IV

It occurred to me the other day that I might like to become a United States senator. It seems like a swell job, traveling the world at taxpayer expense, enjoying the big office, rubbing elbows with Washington's cocktail party circuit, cracking wise with John McCain. What fun.

And of course everyone calls you "Senator." That seems nice, too.

But I'm not getting any younger. And I have no money. Surely there must be a faster track to get to the Beltway. What to do?

And there the answer was all along. All I have to do is change my name to Connie Mack V. Ah, the Fifth. That's always been one of my favorite words for a variety of reasons.

If we've learned anything during this election cycle in Florida, it is that hiring political consultants, showing up for stuff like campaigning and being expected to have positions on silly things like issues are highly overrated.

To capture the Republican nod for the U.S. Senate, one must merely call one's self Connie Mack IV (Roman numeral optional) and — poof! — as if by magic the nomination is assured. No muss. No fuss. How cool is that?

How could anyone deny that Connie Mack is a brilliantly keen political strategist for having the foresight to be named Connie Mack? This is a name with more fringe benefits than Brad Pitt — well, except for one.

You start running around with a name tag that reads: "Hello: My name is Connie Mack," and before you know it, people start saying: "Hey that's a great name. And the best part is, it doesn't sound French. You should run for the United States Senate."

So there you are — Connie Mack, U.S. Senate candidate.

Being Connie Mack means that while all the other candidates race all over the state having to talk to those icky constituents, Connie Mack can spend less time on the hustings than Queen Elizabeth.

It also means that having CM IV monogrammed on your shirt will cause aging Las Vegas gambling bazillionaire Sheldon Adelson to send $1 million to a super PAC supporting your campaign.

Perhaps Adelson, who is 158 years old, thinks buttering up Connie Mack will help him get good seats behind home plate at a Philadelphia baseball game and a Ty Cobb autographed baseball. One can always hope.

Sorta makes you want to change your name to Connie Mack, too, doesn't it? But I have the homestead rights on the V. Get your own number.

It is probably an unfortunate commentary that many people who believe Connie Mack is the cat's pajamas think they are supporting his father, who by a strange coincidence happens to be named former Florida Sen. Connie Mack III.

But that was a whole Roman numeral ago.

This probably explains why Connie Mack IV has avoided the stump, shunned debates with his opponents and only occasionally appeared in public on the odd double date with Mitt Romney.

Why bother to leave California and actually go out on the campaign trail when you could possibly get elected to the Senate by voters who think they are casting a ballot for daddy?

Imagine if Mack the lesser actually showed up at a political event? People might start to ask: "Wait a minute. Who's that guy?" This could get confusing.

That's not to say Connie Mack IV, who represents the Fort Myers area in Congress when he has a few spare moments, is entirely absent from the political fray.

Why, there was the disembodied voice of Mack IV Thursday on a conference call after the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the Affordable Care Act, calling the ruling "un-American" and a threat to our "freedoms and liberties."

Who knew a Supreme Court decision on health care could be equated with the annexation of the Sudetenland?

Thanks for clearing that up.

Inspired by the younger Mack, who has adopted the Thomas Pynchon School of Campaigning, my plan is to change my name to Connie Mack V and immediately go into seclusion for the duration of the campaign unless I have to cash a check from Sheldon Adelson.

Of course, from time to time I will emerge telephonically to accuse incumbent Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson of being in cahoots with Moscow Center and the rest of those Obamacare commies in the White House.

Being Sen. Connie Mack V will be rewarding — the title, the bowing and scraping in my presence. And the health care plan is pretty sweet, too.

Daniel Ruth can be reached at [email protected]

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