Republican 2012 Presidential hopeful Tim Pawlenty remains hospitalized after accidentally being buried alive following a graveside memorial service he attended this morning.
According to Newton Toomey, an anonymous source familiar with the incident, the ceremony had just ended when cemetery workers apparently mistook the former Minnesota governor for the guest of honor. After gently lowering him — coincidentally to the same approximate depth as his most recent poll numbers – they then, as is their custom, waited for any of those gathered who wished to drop one shovel-full of dirt onto the candidate before completely filling the grave. It was only then that they noticed the attractive, yet tasteful mahogany casket that was left above-ground and called Emergency Services.
“This sort of thing happens more often than you’d think – especially with people living so much longer nowadays,” Paul Sokoloff, a spokesman for Cemetery Workers Local 86 told reporters. “Even with a box there, it’s often hard to distinguish the deceased from the mourners. These aren’t exactly the sort of events people come to looking their best. When in doubt, our members pick the one who looks least likely to become a bell-ringer, if you know what I mean. They usually get it right. What makes this situation so unusual is that it’s the first instance I’ve heard of where nobody seemed to notice or even tried to correct the workers.”
When asked why the workers called for someone else to correct their error, Mr. Sokoloff explained, “For safety reasons, our contract expressly forbids our workers from digging any site that might contain any live persons. Under those circumstances, one misplaced shovel could eliminate any need for recovering the body in the first place. The workers in this incident acted quickly, appropriately, and responsibly. Any lingering debate over whether Mr. Pawlenty is actually alive or not has nothing to with the actions of any member or members of this union.”
After a quick exhumation, Pawlenty reportedly walked under his own power to a waiting ambulance, where he had an aide record a video of him quipping, “Now I know what Obamneycare really feels like” for use in a future campaign ad before being taken, for precautionary reasons, to a local hospital.
A short time later, hospital officials told the couple from Des Moines who seemed to be the only ones to notice that something was amiss that Mr. Pawlenty’s vital signs were normal, but they decided to admit him overnight in the hope that he would demonstrate some form of animation before being discharged.