So as we trudge to the polls next week to make, what for many, will be a less-than-thrilling choice, maybe it’s a good time to get in the WayForward Machine and look at the potential scenarios for what will happen once one or the other of these men is elected.
First of all, let’s admit the vast majority of registered voters aren’t going to even bother casting a ballot. And of those that do, my guess is most of them are going to scratch the dot for the candidate from the political party they like. So really this is for those beleaguered souls stuck somewhere between Doug Jones’ left-of-center stance and Roy Moore’s desire to be a Girl Scout troop leader.
Obviously Jones wouldn’t have much of a chance in Alabama if it weren’t for his opponent’s behavior over the years. Some see Moore as a firebrand who will follow his convictions no matter what, while many others see him as an opportunist who really has no legislative understanding or plans.
But there are those on the line, torn between their politics and common sense. No one can know what is going to happen next Tuesday … other than that one will be elected to the U.S. Senate. I’m going to paint a few scenarios and then use my amazing prognostication skills to take a look forward as to how each might behave in office.
Let’s look first at what Doug Jones might be like in the Senate:
Scenario 1 — Jones gets to DC where he immediate goes hot tubbing with Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi and is told what committees he’ll be on and how he’s expected to vote if he wants those assignments. Jones sits back and sips a frozen margarita and thinks, “I’m all in! Wait a minute? Is Chuck wearing a bathing suit??! Who cares!” — 25 percent chance of happening.
Scenario 2 — Jones drives to DC — rear bumper covered with “My Body, My Choice” stickers — and spends most of his down time serving orange juice and chocolate cookies at an abortion clinic. — 3 percent chance, only because he likes chocolate chip cookies.
Scenario 3 — Jones goes rogue and becomes the Senate’s most conservative Democrat, breaking with Schumer and the rest of the leadership on issues like minimum wage, tax reductions and gun control. He also proposes a compromise to make The Wall shorter to give undocumented workers a fighting chance at pole vaulting in. — 15 percent chance.
Scenario 4 — Jones is a center-left U.S. Senator who serves with no scandal, but also votes with the Democratic leadership the vast majority of the time and is able to direct a decent amount of federal money to Alabama. His vote helps stall some Republican initiatives, though, and when he runs again in two years he’s soundly defeated by someone other than Luther Strange or Roy Moore. — 75 percent chance.
Now let’s look at how Roy Moore might play out in the Senate:
Scenario 1 — Moore’s election helps spur the election of other Christian conservatives to the senate in the next cycle and in a few years he’s one of the leading Republicans helping set the party’s more conservative agenda and becomes a master of the legislative process who directs billions in federal dollars back to Alabama and eventually surpasses Richard Shelby for the number of buildings he has named after himself. — .5 percent chance.
Scenario 2 — Moore gets a key to the U.S. Senate chambers and one night while everyone is back home raising money for re-election, he has a 15-ton block of granite hauled onto the senate floor. The granite is carved with a likeness of Moore as Moses holding up the Ten Commandments. On the backside are carved the lyrics of Stevie Nicks’ hit song “Edge of Seventeen.” He refuses orders to have the boulder removed and eventually is censured by the entire Senate, except for Al Franken, who is a huge Fleetwood Mac fan. He leaves office in disgrace. — 64 percent chance of happening.
Scenario 3 — Moore becomes a back bencher in the senate, never really sponsoring any pertinent legislation or getting anything passed. Almost everything he does propose is religion-based and gets half the country into a massive tizzy. He also sets a senate filibuster record by reading the entire King James version of the Bible while attempting to derail federal legislation related to same-sex bathrooms.
Moore is ridiculed by the national media and anytime Alabamians travel anywhere else in the country they are inundated with comments about how crazy and out of touch our senator is. Alabamians will argue that he may be crazy, but he’s all about touching. People seldom get the joke. More serious allegations continue to surface about his lust for teenage girls when he was in his 30s — including an episode in a Limited Too captured on an old security video — and eventually he is forced to resign in disgrace. — 97 percent chance of happening.
Scenario 4 — About two days after Moore’s elected the writing samples from a year book he allegedly signed and letter he allegedly wrote for a couple of teenage girls years ago will be positively identified as his. The people who voted for him as a good Christian man will have to rectify the fact that he not only dated teens when he was in his 30s, but also that he stood up in church and lied about not knowing them. — 99.9 percent chance of happening.
Of course these are just a few semi-educated guesses as to what might happen when one or the other of these fellows heads to Washington to represent us. But I have no doubt which one will saddle us with more political theater if he is elected.