One day ahead of the Indiana and North Carolina primaries, Hillary Clinton has set off a new round of political squabbling by claiming that the movie Iron Man implicitly supports her in the race for the Democratic nomination.
"You know, you don't have a lot of free time when your on the campaign trail," she told co-host Kathy Lee Gifford during the fourth hour of NBC's Today Show. "Last night, however, I got to participate in an event shared by millions of average hard-working Americans this past week-end. I saw 'Iron Man'. This is a movie about resilience and the strength of the American spirit in a time of crisis, and other than voting for me, seeing this move is the most valuable way you could spend a couple of hours. And people, let me tell you, as I sat there and watched the action unfold, the director's message came to me loud and clear - 'Hillary, you are Iron Man'."
Gifford's reply that 'Maybe you're Iron Woman' was met with an icy glare.
"No," said Clinton, "I'm Iron Man."
Barack Obama, campaigning in North Carolina, was quick to label Clinton's statements as an example of her 'fantastical thinking, much like her gas tax holiday'.
"Anybody can come out making outrageous claims, and while I'm sure Senator Clinton is speaking metaphorically, comparing herself to a fictional super-hero is not helpful in the dialogue we're trying to have with the American people. Besides, Robert Downey Jr. has already endorsed me."
"How totally elitist, and how totally expected," was Clinton's reply. "Tony Stark, who is Iron Man's secret identity - whoops, I guess I let the cat out of the bag, there... But my point is, Tony Stark is a wealthy industrialist, and yet he is not an elitist like some people I could mention. He likes a drink and a joke, and just like me he can be counted on to obliterate the sort of terrorist nations that Senator Obama would prefer to engage in polite conversation. I am Iron Man and Barack Obama is not, it's as simple as that."
While most pundits dismissed Clinton's remarks as silly, they are not expected to hurt her in the Tuesday's primaries. A Harris poll taken Sunday night shows that forty-three percent of likely Indiana voters believe that Iron Man is real.
©2008, Mark Hoback