Having tested the political waters in various shopping malls throughout the nation, a confident Fubar ended minutes of speculation yesterday by finally making it official -- he's a candidate for president of the United States.
Of the 457 presidential hopefuls (as of 7:30 last night), he is the only declared robot in the race. It remains unclear whether he is entitled to Secret Service protection and equal time on Donahue, or just to discount rates on Rust-Oleum.
Speaking in a voice that resembles Richard Nixon's, had it been run through a Cuisinart, Mr. Fubar made a two-minute speech before answering questions from the throng of eight reporters that gathered to hear him. Stating that he was neither a Democrat nor a Republican, but a "Spaceofile," Mr. Fubar made perhaps the most honest declaration yet heard in the 1980 presidential campaign. "I am the ultimate political machine," he said. There was no other highlight in his opening remarks.
Mr. Fubar made his announcement in the East Room of the National Press Club in front of an American flag and a single strand of red, white and blue crepe paper.
Said one campaign worker: "It could look tackier."
Added another: "How?"
At 10 a.m., when the candidate was supposed to declare, everyone was looking for Mr. Fubar. Ten minutes later he entered, as is his style, on metal wheels and pledged to be a tireless campaigner. He handed out bumper stickers which say TGIF: Thank Goodness It's Fubar, and concluded his remarks by extending his hands, which have only three fingers, and urging the reporters, "Gimme three," as he pressed the flesh in his extraordinary way. Some of those present who had never before seen Mr. Fubar commented that he looked tired, that his eyes seemed red. "His eyes are red," one staffer said.
Knowledgeable political observers immediately began to discount Mr. Fubar's chances. Said one, pointing out Mr. Fubar's metal parts, "Don't get me wrong. I've got nothing against robots. But no way, Jose, is this guy going to win. Too dependent on big oil."
Mr. Fubar's speech clearly indicated he plans on taking the low road to the White House. Without naming names he tossed bricks at the leading presidential contenders. Speaking of his birth, he said "I climbed out of the Delaware River," and obvious reference to Sen. Kennedy's Chappaquiddick. Calling himself a "born-again robot" evoked images of President Carter's old-time religion, and when Mr. Fubar said, "Forget about Mars, Jupiter and Venus, we must explore what's over the rainbow," he could only have been jabbing Gov. Brown's stated aim to serve the people, protect the earth and explore the universe.
Mr. Fubar did not, however, unleash all his voltage on the Democrats. When he said, "My humble ancestry will be questioned, but I tell you up front my father was a first generation 13-speed blender . . . and my mother," he was poking fun at a standard Gov. Connally campaign line. And the statement, "I suspect my being 150,000 earth orbits old may evoke some criticism, but I honestly can say I dont' feel a day over 25,000" could have only been directed at Gov. Regan. Mr. Fubar had nothing to say about Harold Stassen. Enough is enough on Stassen.
It was during the question-and-answer period that Mr. Fubar's mettle transcended his metal.
Q. What would you do about the Iranian situation?
A. Uranium? I love uranium. Fubar stands for Futuristic Uranium Bio Atomic Robot.
Q. No, the Iranian crisis? Iran?
A. I ran and I run on the Fubar ticket.
Q. Mr. Fubar, it seems like you're dodging the issues?
A. You like my footwork? I'm quick on my wheels. That's why I'm the ultimate political machine.
Q. Whom do you expect to be your toughest opponent?
A. A cute vacuum cleaner from New Jersey.
Q. Will you make Chappaquiddick an issue?
A. Only if he brings up my past, which I dare say may be more sordid than his.
Q. Have you ever been to Studio 54?
A. You won't trap me, fellow.
Mr. Fubar did not reveal where he stands on such issues as oil, pollution, abortion of nuclear power. But because he weights 350 pounds it is safe to assume that wherever he stands on these issues, he stands firmly on them.
Mr. Fubar's press secretary is a man named Peter Gamble, who might be taking a big one with this campaign. While the candidate took some "quite time" between his announcement and his "photo opporunity" as he hit the streets outside the White House, Gamble said the exploratory committees were being set up to determine whether the candidate would enter the New Hampshire primary. "We're not sure that New Hampshire is the proper place to test his strength," Gamble said.It was suggested that a good place for Mr. Fubar to test his strength might be at the Duracell factory.
Traveling with Mr. Fubar was Kent Davis, a close friend and adviser to the candidate. Davis describes himself as an "illusionist," and there have been rumors surrounding the campaign that Davis, and his partner David Gowel, might well be the movers and shakers behind (or even inside) Mr. Fubar, whose Taftian shape is suspiciously like a golf cart on the bottom and a corn popper on top.
While there have been no hints of malfeasance so far in the campaign -- Mr. Fubar said, "You won't need a subopena to see what's in my memory banks" -- there are some questions the American public will need answers to if they are to vote for not just any robot, but this robot.
How can the country cope with an AC/DC candidate?
How can the country put its faith in a candidate who is prone to so many charges?
How current will his campaign be?
Is there any truth to the rumor that he will travel the nation with Robert Conrad on his shoulder, daring the electorate to knock him off?
Perhaps much of this can be put to rest when Mr. Fabar declares his running mate. The candidate had no answer for the press yesterday, but knowledgeable political observers say that the choice had been narrowed to three: Al Kaline, R2 D2 or Mork from Ork. All three are ever ready.