In a stunning move that rocked the political world from Nome to Homs, Bashar al-Assad announced earlier today that he will be stepping down as President of Syria and will immediately focus his full attention on his pursuit of the Republican Party’s nomination for President of the United States. According to aides, he has also already resigned from the Baath party and will register as a Republican as early as Monday, presumably in La Jolla California where he owns a residence which is currently undergoing an expansion.
Due to a diplomatic technicality, Assad, whose mother unexpectedly went into labor and gave birth to him during a function at the U.S. Embassy in Damascus, is eligible to hold the office of United States President since the embassy grounds are recognized as American soil and he is therefore a ‘natural born’ U.S. citizen. Also, according to Hafez al-Fi-Slammaj Amma, a member of his personal staff who spoke on condition of anonymity due to the sensitive nature of the topic, “According to longtime members of the presidential security detail, President Assad coincidentally was also conceived at a U.S. Embassy function – so any obstructionist who might invoke the ‘where his life began’ argument would be barking up the wrong bush, as I believe the expression goes.”
And even before the first reports of a possible cessation of the artillery fire striking the city of Homs came in, Assad was already busy lobbing mortars at the four current GOP contenders.
Referring to his new rivals as “the Marx Brothers” and commenting that “not one of them has the remotest clue of what it takes to be a strong chief executive,” Assad told reporters that he is looking forward to his first contested campaign and expressed his belief that, “America is ready for an openly Muslim president.”
When asked for clarification of his ‘Marx Brothers’ reference, the Middle Eastern strongman who most observers believe will leap to GOP front-runner status as soon as the first polls including his name are released, explained, “Well, I think of Gingrich as Groucho just because the name seems to fit. Romney, of course, is Chico, as he is the son of a Mexican immigrant. Santorum I like to think of as Harpo because I believe he is a good and sincere man whose career would benefit greatly if he could only learn to maintain silence when the cameras are on. And Ron Paul, naturally, is Zeppo, because after following American news coverage of the campaign, it is only when I see Dr. Paul on stage with the others at the debates that I am reminded there is indeed a fourth candidate.”
According to most experts, although it is too late for Mr. Assad to get on the ballot in enough primaries and caucuses to secure the nomination before the convention this summer, there is a strong possibility that he could garner enough delegates to ensure that the convention is a contested one, and as one insider put it, “When Assad’s people and his opponents people get together in a back room somewhere, generally it is Assad’s people who leave standing.”
Assad is expected to have wide appeal among Republican primary voters because of, among other things, his commitment to a strong military and his fervent belief that life begins at conception and ends when one turns against their country. In addition, many in the party’s base are hopeful that as President, he would handle the so-called ‘Occupy Movement’ in much the same way he dealt with protesters in Syria, particularly those who occupied the city of Homs.
Shortly after Mr. Assad’s plans were announced, a spokesman for David and Charles Koch — the conservative billionaires who have already pledged $100 million to the Republican Party to help defeat President Obama — told reporters that the brothers were, “most intrigued at the prospect of an Assad candidacy.” The spokesman then added, “We believe that as running mates, President Assad would create what I would describe as an intriguing, ‘frothy’ sort of mix with someone like a Rick Santorum, for example.”