Time For a Change: Watson for President

Watson the famed shelterdog, who garnered national attention during the last election for his song, ''Political Animal,'' has broken his long silence has announced the formation of an exploratory committee to run for President of the United States. Why is he running? Can any dog have Presidential aspirations, let alone one of uncertain parentage and breed? What issues would a Watson campaign focus on? How would a shelterdog raise money for a long and expensive campaign? How would he get his message out? Could he hold his own in debates against such articulate opponents as Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, and Rudy Giuliani? These are just some of the questions he addressed in his press conference:

Q: Watson, why are you running?
W: I haven't decided for sure whether I am running or not. But, as someone who is part lab and part border collie, if I had my druthers, I'd always be running.

Q: What about your background?
W: What about my background?

Q: Well, it's commonly known that you were rescued from the Humane Society. Do you think America is ready for an abandoned shelterdog?
W: Hey, we've got the first serious woman running. We've got the first serious African American running. Yet Canine Americans have never had a chance. We can't vote. We can't even sit in restaurants. And no one is speaking to our issues. Do you think Hillary or Obama or Rudy will say one word about the stray cat crisis in America? Fat chance. I think that we're overdue for a smart, serious Canine American.

Q: Are you old enough to be President?
W: In dog years? Sure.

Q: What issues would a Watson campaign raise?
W: Well, I've already mentioned one. The cat scourge. There's also the squirrel scourge, the chipmunk scourge--I could go on and on. I also will provide real leadership. We don't have it now. This isn't a Democratic or Republican issue. People just don't know how to lead; they're sheep. And I know sheep. If you don't believe me, ask why shows like American Idol and Survivor are still on the air. I am a leader. I'm part border collie. I can herd horses, sheep, goats. My campaign slogan will explain it all: ''Bred to lead.'' I have other ideas, too. I want to change the off-leash areas of America.

Q: In what way?
W. They're too small. My solution is simple: Reverse the present system. Put the cats in the existing off-leash areas and let the dogs have the rest.

Q: Can you honestly assure the public that this isn't just a stunt to promote your song, ''Political Animal?''
W: Give me a break. Do you think a dog would compromise his values for small favors?

Q: How do you plan to raise money and organize your support?
W: Easy. In the first place, my campaign will mobilize the support of the vast canine economy. PetSmart, Purina, the Milk Bone Company, and all those other companies know that they'd do a lot better with me as president than what we have now. And think of all the Dog People around the country. They'd be in my pocket, if I had pockets. If any of them refuses to support me, my fellow dogs will organize the country's first Piddle-In. Who will dare to say no?

Q: We heard rumors that there's dissension, even within your own family, about your candidacy. Isn't it true that some family members are supporting other candidates?
W: Oh, that's just a bunch of kitty litter being put out by desperate opponents. According to Fox News, it's a falsehood launched by Hillary's campaign. The only family member who has not yet endorsed me is Baby Grace, who My People just adopted from Vietnam.

Q: Why isn't she supporting you?
W: I don't know that she isn't. She doesn't talk much. But if she doesn't support me, it's because she wants Arnold to run--and win--so that people born outside the US can run for President. She's already planning her campaign for 2044.