Capitol Hill was abuzz this weekend with news that GOP officials are preparing to add legendary swashbuckler One-Eyed Willy of “Goonies” movie fame to the short list of candidates for a 2016 presidential campaign.
A small group of Congressional Republicans held a brief press conference Friday to announce formal consideration of Willy (last name unknown) for the next election’s ticket and unveil the campaign slogan “Never Say Die,” echoing the inspiring rallying cry of the plucky teens who were first to discover the cunning buccaneer’s whereabouts deep within a labyrinth of tunnels on the Oregon coast.
While the announcement was embraced with enthusiasm from Tea Party stalwarts, many of whom were in high school remedial English in 1985 when Willy debuted to audiences nationwide, rank-and-file Republicans were quick to distance themselves from the news, adopting a more cautious approach.
“This is baseless speculation of the most irresponsible kind,” responded Republican Party spokesperson Willis Carruthers in a statement to the media Friday from the GOP’s newly established offices in Astoria, Oregon. “The Republican Party has a broad base of candidates to select from that remain among the living. Neither party leadership nor the majority of Republican representatives have any interest in resurrecting the dead solely for political purposes.”
The alleged interest in Steven Spielberg’s legendary cutthroat was met with a wide variety of opinions across the political spectrum, ranging from silent bewilderment to eager praise.
“For years now, the Republican party has been labelled as stale and predictable. This is just the kind of bold and aggressive thinking that can put our values and platform back on the map,” commented political analyst Joel Crumb, who went so far as to call the alleged candidate an “inspired” selection.
“Look at Willy’s values: individualism. Tough – but fair – leadership. A vague agenda defined only by cryptic clues and snippets of juvenile doggerel. Fanatical devotion to the accumulation of wealth. This is a man who has taken the concept of acquiring obscene amounts of money and sitting on it obsessively, and elevated it to the stuff of true legend. What grassroots conservative couldn’t acknowledge this man’s commitment to the ideals of the modern Republican party?”
Democrats, however, weren’t so quick to praise the potential newcomer.
“A freakin’ pirate?”commented Maryann Gillespie, political commentator and Beltway insider. “That’s where we’re at? I just…I don’t know. That’s where we’re at, evidently.”
When pressed for specific concerns regarding the centuries-dead sailor, Gillespie pointed not just to the “ick factor”, but to the possibility of a full resurrection that would ultimately be paid for on the taxpayer’s dime.
“Any return to life raises a host of additional questions,” pointed out financial correspondent Jeremy Baier. “How will Willy’s riches be handled as a campaign contribution? And what about the precious gemstones stored in Mikey’s marble bag? Republicans want these issues to go away, but they’re still out there, hanging overhead much like the treacherous boulder trap that proved to be Chester Copperpot’s demise.”
Republicans have been quick to call attention to Willy’s cunning intellect, pointing out the elaborately designed underground crypt that according to legend was constructed under the pirate leader’s strict supervision. “Surely a mind diabolical enough to conceive of such an array of traps and surprises can field a few softballs on immigration from Diane Sawyer,” noted Crumb.
Many Democrats, however remain generally unconvinced by this argument. “That ‘diabolical crypt,’ so fondly referenced by Republicans as the greatest of Willy’s accomplishments, was navigated by a twelve-year-old in the space of around sixty minutes,” argued Gillespie. “This is hardly the kind of innovative thinking that Americans expect from their Commander-in-Chief.”
The conference also called into focus the sharp ideological divide between a vocal Tea Party contingent and more mainstream conservatives.
“We cannot allow a small group of Republicans to hold the entire party hostage in this fashion,” warned House Speaker John Boehner in a prepared statement Sunday. “For the GOP to permit a hijacking of the conservative agenda Americans need and deserve would be no different from the way Brand foolishly allowed his arm to be clamped to the side of Troy’s convertible, culminating in a dangerous and unnecessary tumble into the Oregon woods.”
Regardless of the divided opinions, Republicans on both sides of the debate concede that talk of a 2016 presidential run is generally premature until Willy himself can be located. A political action team has been dispatched to the North Pacific Ocean, where Willy was last seen almost thirty years ago sailing his ship, the Inferno, for parts unknown.
In addition, a second group is reportedly navigating the original underground route taken by the Goonies, though rumors persist that the team, anchored by Texas governor and noted archaeologist Rick Perry, have been unable to negotiate the slippery log bridge that years ago proved both painful and problematic for Tea Party members Jake and Francis Fratelli. Representatives for the expedition dismissed such reports, repeatedly referencing the three piano lessons Perry endured as a child as clear evidence that the governor is more than prepared for the massive skeletal pipe organ that awaits on the far side.
Regardless, the mood in the “Never Say Die” campaign offices remains upbeat. “They’ll find him,” commented Baier. “Either that or they’ll just nominate that kid Troy’s dad, that prick who owns the golf course. He’s still around there somewhere.”