Friday, March 9, 2012


As always, when things heated up, Barack Obama remained cool.
And now he's making his way to the Rushmore Four after defeating Jed Bartlet in our toughest fight yet.

Obama vs. Bartlet
Barack Obama701 (53.9%)
Josiah "Jed" Bartlet     600 (46.1%)

We'd have to say, there's a strange feeling in the HttCttD Offices this week. We can't help but think that there may have been some voting irregularities on both sides. However, since there's no way of proving anything, we'll have to accept the possibility that we had over 1,300 legitimate voters this week.

If that's the case, then we welcome our new voters, over 1,250 of you! There is nothing absolutely fishy about any of this.

We're curious if Snowball Simpson voted this week.
Bob Terwilliger voter, Snowball, hangs out in heaven, waiting for more crooked elections.
We appreciate the outpouring of support this week, all in the name of good fun. This has our most exciting race to date, and not just because we've had seven times the number of voters more than our previous record.

This week, we have to say goodbye to Bartlet, who has done wonders for attracting voters; even if they did only show up when he was fighting. In our 59 weeks of fights so far, we've had a total of 3,142 votes. In the four weeks Bartlet was up, we've had a total of 1,684 votes. Just as comparison, the four weeks Jack Ryan fought brought in 127 votes. Since those four Bartlet weeks account for more than half of our votes, we thought we'd have one of our co-bloggers offer some final words for Bartlet.
Doug: Bartlet was truly amazing to watch in The West Wing. He was tenacious, strong-willed and highly intelligent. If this had been a contest on who would win in a debate or a popularity contest, Tony and I probably wouldn't have gone through the trouble of creating a bracket of 64 presidents. We'd probably have just said, "No doubt, Bartlet's the best," and the discussion wouldn't have gone beyond that afternoon in Dec. 2010. 
But no, it was actually a question of who would win in a physical fight. We wanted people to consider physical strength, build, age, health and wits. While Bartlet has oodles of the latter, that's pretty much all he's got going for him. He wouldn't be the weakest fighter in the pool, but he's not exactly the complete package either. 
In the Round of 16, I knew Franklin Pierce didn't stand a chance. He was up against Bartlet, who had somehow beat Lyndon B. Johnson with 81% of the vote (which is just absurd, but whatever). I suspected that Bartlet supporters were sent to our blog to vote without even considering what was being asked, so I thought I'd goad Bartlet supporters into commenting and explain their reasoning. Maybe if they could answer for this, even in a fun way, I'd be better with this. Maybe I didn't know about one scene of one episode where Josh, C.J. and Toby were sitting around and agreeing with the idea that if Bartlet were to fight all of the U.S. Presidents, he'd win. If that were the case, then it was in The West Wing canon. I'd have to accept it. 
The answers I did get didn't really make me feel better.
Wait, so you voted for Bartlet because Pierce supported the Confederacy? Is the argument here that supporting the Confederacy automatically makes one a weaker fighter? That's, at best, specious reasoning. That's like saying that Federalists were better singers or that people who are pro-choice are automatically better at cribbage. 
So, either Bartlet supporters couldn't be bothered to read what our blog was about before voting, or they just didn't care and voted for Bartlet anyway. The irony in this astounded me, given that The West Wing was one of the most intelligent shows in television history. Maybe next, we should create a blog called "Who Sucks?" and laugh when Bartlet wins in a landslide against some universally despised president. 
Bartlet supporters could have been much smarter in finagling their guy to victory by planning ahead. By only showing up on Bartlet weeks, they were making their intentions and their blatant disregard for the question at hand obvious. 
For example: Bartlet got 81% against LBJ in the 2nd Round. That seems a bit unbelievable. LBJ was a big, angry guy. True he had health issues, but so did Bartlet. Bartlet's advantage could have been that he was clear-headed. I could have accepted it if he won with under 60% of the vote, but 81%? No, that raises some red flags.  
What would have been even better? Not just voting in Bartlet weeks, but also influencing who Bartlet met in later rounds. Bartlet getting 81% against LBJ is unbelievable. But what if LBJ narrowly lost in the 1st Round? Then we'd have a Bartlet going up against Chester A. Arthur in the 2nd Round. That sounds like a much more reasonable win for Bartlet. 
Either way, it looks like some of our other readers got sick of this and recruited some help to put an end to these shenanigans; possibly by employing some tomfloolery of their own. And to that, I say, "It's about freakin' time." 
Of course, I'm doubt that most of you are even reading this, so whatever.
The Chief: Thank you, Doug. I hope you're not the one who gives my eulogy.

The comments this week either support some part of Doug's tirade, or prove its veracity.
However, we're going to give this week's Eisenhower Memorial Comment of the Week to this person who captures the spirit (and the point) of HttCttD.

Obama goes on to the Rushmore Four where he waits to find out who he'll be fighting in his Semifinal match scheduled for March 26. Join us next week for our last Quarterfinal match, when Theodore Roosevelt fights John F. Kennedy.


  1. You can't be surprised that people voted early and voted often in a contest involving a Chicago politician.

    I'm one of the biggest The West Wing fans around, but I'm glad Bartlet lost. As you say, he was a great character, but it would have been a shame if he had made it to the Rushmore Four based on people voting with their hearts and not with their heads.

    (All that said, I did not participate in any voting shenanigans. I voted once and only once.)

  2. I do feel kind of sad you didn't reference my comment on Bartlet and New Hampshirite rage, actually... I showed up a couple days too late to vote, but that would've been my rationale... also, this time, to be sure, Bartlet literally haunts Obama's dreams. That's got to give a guy an edge.