Now, it’s serious.
Welcome to Presidential Madness Round Four: the Final Four. Just like the real NCAA March Madness, our field of fictional presidents are squaring off daily to see who will advance and ultimately be crowned best fit as President of the United States. In a series of polls, we’re answering the age-old question: does life imitate art more than art imitates life? You decide.
The Elite Eight had its share of excitement: Andrew Shepherd easily handled Matt Douglas from “My Fellow Americans,” and David Palmer from “24” lost in a near-landslide to Cinderella Thomas Whitmore.
Now we’re down to just four fictional Commanders in Chief. Remember, you can follow the entire tournament on our Presidential Madness page.
Andrew Shepherd from “The American President” vs. Jed Bartlet from “The West Wing”
Jed Bartlet was portrayed as the “ideal” president and is the direct descendant of Josiah Bartlet, a real-world signatory of the Declaration of Independence. According to Wikipedia his accomplishments include: amnesty to illegal immigrants from the Americas, appointing the first Hispanic Supreme Court Justice and first female Chief Justice, negotiating a peace settlement between Israel and Palestine, creating millions of new jobs, providing strong support for alternative energy, and orchestrating a Social Security reform plan.
Andrew Shepard plays a widowed President in The American President who falls in love with an environmental lobbyist. In the movie Shepard must ward of attacks over family values from his challenger while deciding whether to pass a weak (but politically safe) crime bill, or to risk alienating voters and passing a strict environmental bill.
Merkin Muffley from “Dr. Strangelove” vs. Thomas Whitmore from “Independence Day”
A former jet pilot in the Gulf War, Thomas Whitmore helps rally the world’s Air Force as aliens threaten to wipe humanity off the map. Though hesitating to counter attack at first, Whitmore eventually authorizes a long-shot plan to defeat the aliens as they move to attack the secret base where he and much of the U.S. government is housed. Here he motivates the survivors before the last-ditch attack.
Peter Sellers plays the president in this Stanley Kubrick classic Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb, about a nuclear bomb falling into the wrong hands. In the movie Sellers plays three roles, but this time we’re only voting on his capacities as president.
Return to Constitution Daily this week for the rest of the tournament and keep track of the competition on our Presidential Madness page.