It Don’t Mean a Thing If It Ain’t Got That Zing: Welcome to the Reason’s First 2012 Presidential Debate Drinking Game

Two men enter, two men leave. No, it’s not a steel cage match, it’s the first presidential debate of 2012, in which two men compete to become the leader of the free world by answering game show style trivia questions, delivering pithy one-liners, and trying really hard not to check their watches or roll their eyes

Representing the Republicans is Mitt Romney, the former governor of Massachusetts, the King of Bain, the namesake of RomneyCare, the grandfather of ObamaCare.

Representing the Democrats is Barack Obama, the sitting president, the former Senator from Illinois, the man who gave you the 2009 stimulus, ObamaCare, the Dodd-Frank overhaul of financial regulation, $6 trillion in new federal debt, and so much more.

Tonight is the domestic policy debate, so we’ll likely hear discussion of various big and wonky issues of the day: What would these two contenders do about the federal debt? About the nation’s unsustainable entitlement system? About the president’s unpopular and unworkable health care bill and the continuing problems with the American health system? About the harsh and deeply boring reality of congressional gridlock? Do either of them have policy plans worth a single solitary damn?

We’ll also get answers on the questions that people really care about: Will Mitt Romney get angry and Hulk out? Will Barack Obama act thin-skinned, imperious, and condescending? And for the love of the zombie ghosts of Reagan and/or FDR, will there be zingers?

Adding to the suspense is that both campaigns have worked so hard to set pre-debate expectations low enough that any candidate who manages not to show up drunk and wearing face paint and a clown nose (seriously, don’t ask) will be said to have beaten expectations, and thus won the evening.

In other words, we’re all going to need a drink or two to get through this. And as long as we’re drinking, we might as well make it a game. Here’s how you can play along with Reason’s editorial staff as we imbibe our way through tonight’s presidential mano-a-mano:

Take a drink, and click a link, if:

Be sure to check back in at 9 p.m. EST as Reason staffers offer live commentary on the debate right here on this very blog.

Remember! Reason encourages responsible budgeting and responsible drinking. We’ve already saddled the future with an unsustainable debt, no need to add a hangover too.

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  • Lord Humungus||

    er, no thanks. I don't think my liver could take the damage.

  • ||

    Suderman's a DNC plant intending to trick the libertarians here to drink themselves to death. Clever, eh?

  • Hyperion||

    It's not clever, it's a stupid plan. Did the DNC forget that it is us Ls that are going to throw the election to their guy by voting for GJ? No GJ voters and Romney wins.

  • stoneymonster||

    Given the choice between two evils, I'm gonna not pick either of them, thanks.

  • Hyperion||

    So, then vote for GJ.

  • Sudden||

    I have five gallons of pale ale ready for this, but I'm thinking I might need to bottle my other five gallons of porter this afternoon in time for the debate.

  • Agile Cyborg||

    Drink stout, you massive baby. Where does it say to drink a shot of everclear per whateva? Soon as I hear or read liver recoil from booze I think diaper-changin' time.

  • Bill||

    So, if we drink, every time they don't mention the drug war, doesn't that mean we'll be drinking constantly?

  • Paul.||

    I'm so over this election.

  • ||

    If only they had been stupid enough to schedule it during Thursday night football.

  • BakedPenguin||

    They would have just thugged the game to another time.

  • Lost_In_Translation||

    dear god, you want me plastered by 8:01 CST?

  • LTC(ret) John||

    And dead by alcohol poisioning by 8:20 CST!

  • Caleb Turberville||

    An evening class followed by The Avengers plus Joss Whedon commentary should keep me preoccupied for 5 hours this evening. Good luck to those of you who watch the debates.

  • KDN||

    Replace the Avengers with Deep Space 9 on Netflix and I'm in the same boat. I've not been so excited to miss what everyone else watched since every NFL game this year!

  • ||

    I can't afford to be hung over anyway, since I have a party to plan for the weekend, but I've got plenty of Boardwalk Empire to keep me busy while party loyalists battle it out at the debates.

  • hotsy totsy||

    I'd be soooo drunk, even if the drink was only a drop of 3.2 beer.

  • Rights-Minimalist Autocrat||

    Two words: lap dance.

  • Hyperion||

    I have to opt out as well. I have to drive into the city tomorrow and it's not nice driving down the parkway at 8:30am with a .52 BAC and only one eye being held open by my monocle.

  • sarcasmic||

    I knew a guy who drove while drunk so often that he hung an eye patch from his mirror.

  • KDN||

    "I'm not drunk. I'm avoiding potholes."

  • Auric Demonocles||

    You're drinking with your chauffeur?

  • KPres||

    He beat him to death with his cane for using iMaps.

  • ||

    I would be in the hospital by the end of the first 5 minutes.

  • Rich||

    I'm thinking the "debate"-induced retching will probably reduce the effects of the alcohol.

  • LTC(ret) John||

    Ah, a safety mechanism - good point.

  • ||

    Listen to two sociopaths barf talking points, with Gary Johnson absent? I've got better things to do. EVERYONE has better things to do.

  • ||

    Except Tony and Shrike. They'll be 69'ing to all that arousing, stimulating debate action.

  • The Craig||

    Scissoring, so they can see the tv.

  • Hyperion||

    Yep, just stay tuned here to wait for Tony to tell us how brilliant his master was.

  • ||

    No, he's not going to. Not today. Considering how many orgasms he's likely to have while watching Hussein I perform his routine, I think he'll just pass out on Shrike's crotch.

  • Hyperion||

    If not we can just read the MSM follow ups, saying such puke worthy things as 'he really hit it out of the park tonight'. Vomit.

  • ||

    That's why it's not a good idea to have your girlfriend around when you're watching the debate or the analyses that cccome afterwards -- you puke intermittently, but without end, and she runs away disgusted.

  • Auric Demonocles||

    Pete, you're 33.33% alright.

  • R C Dean||

    Ya know, I followed Althouse's blog for awhile (I used to live in Madison, law prof, etc.) but drifted away.

    I see over at Instapundit that she (a) voted for Obama in 2008 (b) is genuinely undecided this time around (meaning she may vote for him again, after the colossal clusterfuck of the last four years) and (c) thinks that airing in full his 2007 race-baiting speech is "repellent".

    Now I know why I quit reading her.

  • Auric Demonocles||

    I wonder what she thought of the media storm over Paul's 80's newsletters.

  • Hyperion||

    The same thing that Tony thinks. It's ok when their team does it.

  • Killazontherun||

    I've been pretty much repelled by anyone who bought into the official Obama speech on race. It was praised up and down from coast to coast for its 'adding honest, frank adult language to the national conversation' and all I saw with every sentence he uttered was a dodgy naked emperor wannabe.

  • Killazontherun||

    In other words, she bought the official Obama speech on race hook, line and sinker and is ruffled to be reminded that she is a fool.

  • John||

    Funny how all of the praise for the Philadelphia speech went right down the memory hole.

  • Drake||

    She isn't nearly as smart as she thinks she is.

  • John||

    What Drake said. I enjoy the links she has. But I can't say I have ever read anything written by her that was particularly clever or interesting.

  • Rasilio||

    I'm hoping the gang doing the live commentary have someone not playing the game cause otherwise by about 9:30 no one is gonna be sober enough to type.

  • LTC(ret) John||

    It would be fun to see if they dicated through Dragon or some other voice recognition software.... "Omagah, I amsooooooood runk!"

  • John||

    http://www.nationaljournal.com.....s-20121002

    National Journal poll shows the race tied at 47%. But it does so with a D+7 sample. If that poll is not an outlier, and it may be, Obama is way behind because no way is there going to be anything approaching a D+7 advantage in turnout.

  • Auric Demonocles||

    Dude, just accept it. Democrats are clearly as excited as they were when they got to cast a "historic" vote for the first black president. And Republicans are clearly as apathetic now that they have a shitty economy and government healthcare mandate to bitch about.

  • Tim||

    I'd love to watch but I'm planning a bowel movement.

  • LTC(ret) John||

    Its good to have a plan.

    I think yours is better than watching.

  • GILMORE||

    A Russkie don't take a dump without a plan, son.

  • ||

    Or without a permit.

  • GILMORE||

  • SugarFree||

    If you get stuck, just watch a little of the debate.

  • GILMORE||

    Explosive vomiting is not conducive to a healthy, roberative evacuation of the bowels.

    It sprays shit all over the place.

  • SugarFree||

    Tim needs a good, healthy ragedump, no one said anything about vomiting.

  • TheSpiteHouse||

    Ragedump? Why that's just--

  • joeldpalmer||

    When the moderator shows the video of Romney on FOX News pushing the Romneycare individual mandate as a national model or Obama points out that Romney personally encouraged him to adopt the individual mandate with Obamacare, all Republicans will drink, a lot. Of course, this info and the videos have been widely available but ignored. So much for the Teaparty.

  • Hyperion||

    What do the Tea Party have to do with Romneycare? Did they come out in favor of it? I wasn't aware of that.

  • ||

    I smell a liberaltarian.

  • Hyperion||

    I thought that I smelled troll. Maybe that was just Tony smell coming through the interwebs as he was walking by his computer.

  • SugarFree||

    Anyone who considers Romney a TEA Party candidate is either trolling or delusional. Either way, they can be ignored for contributing nothing.

  • General Butt Naked||

    Yeah, Rick Santorum was the clear Tea Party favorite!

    Truth, motherfuckers, hear it.

  • General Butt Naked||

    Ignore the !. The fuck?

  • LTC(ret) John||

    That would get all the Establicans/TEAM RED backers, not quite the Tea Party folks - they hate and dread both O!care and R-care.

    Would TEAM BLUE have to drink if O! was shown on vidoe promising to go through spending "line by line" to find reductions, then flashing up the debt figures and three years of no budget being passed?

  • Hyperion||

    what about those line item vetoes? Were there any of those? I didn't think so. Hard to line item veto stuff when you never read the bills I suppose.

  • GILMORE||

    This whole game is a horrible idea. I am retching at the very concept of listening to *both* these assholes for an extended period.

    I plan to drink alone in the dark, weeping for the future.

  • T||

    So, just another Wednesday for you, huh?

  • GILMORE||

    Oh, Jesus? Wednesday?? Amateur-Drag night at Madam Changs! Where are my fishnets!!??

  • The Late P Brooks||

    Obama talks about government spending as “investment.”

    Of all the idiotic bullshit talking points, this one may piss me off the most.

  • Hyperion||

    He is actually right though. It's taking your money and investing it in his crony schemes. Someone is getting the benefit from it, just not most of us.

  • Archduke Pantsfan||

    This is a game We all lose

  • Ted Levy||

    I was thinking of going to the movies tonight to see Looper, but I'm concerned about fighting the crowds, because who the F-CK is going to stay home and watch this "debate"?

  • Brett L||

    My plan: Dilute the 'shine I put up a couple months ago from 130pf to 105pf, sip, and watch something else. Had a taste of it two weeks ago and it has (with the aid of cooked oak chips) matured into a nice flavorful whiskey, smooth with vanilla and woody flavors. Although as previously stated at 130 proof, it still burns the throat.

    Bonus: I can save these chips, make a nice backstrap molasses rum, and use the whiskey chips to flavor and color the rum. I think I'll start that this weekend.

  • T||

    Brett, you know you shouldn't admit to federal felonies on the internet, right?

  • db||

    He might have a distiller's license.

  • T||

    Yeah, let's go with that.

    I actually looked into that. That is a mind boggling PITA.

  • Brett L||

    Please. I've been posting about 14" cock for years on the internet and no one has come calling about that. I think I'm safe.

  • T||

    Once the feds figure out how to tax it by the inch, they'll come calling.

  • ||

    Damn I need to get up to Tallahassee. There be 'shine in them there hills!

  • sarcasmic||

    alt-text for the Romney pic - "I can ride my bike with no handlebars"

  • Auric Demonocles||

    "47% of Americans ride their bikes with no handlebars"

  • sarcasmic||

    You may have missed the reference, so here.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HLUX0y4EptA

  • Slumbrew||

    Yikes, totally forgot about this tune.

  • Auric Demonocles||

    I did not miss it. I was making it better.

  • ||

    Considering that the "debate" is virtually scripted, they might as well just edit up a montage of "Dueling Stump Speeches", and let the candidates have the evening off.

    I'm going to opt for a power-drinking session starting at 7:00, followed by an hour of pointing and laughing until "Restaurant Stakeout" comes on.

  • Slumbrew||

    This Red Sox season makes me want to slit my wrists, but at least I can watch tonight on the off-chance they can push the Yankees into a one-game playoff... oh, who am I kidding? Dice-K is pitching, it's in the Bronx... Still, a fine excuse to avoid the debate.

  • Auric Demonocles||

    Had the chance last night and couldn't do it.

  • Shocked||

    You forgot a big one: Everytime Obama says the millionaires and billionaires should pay a little bit more and all will be good.

  • Lisa||

    Obama looks smarmy
    Romney grins desperately

  • txgypsy||

    well,.........damn............this drinking game sucked!!......didnt even finish a second bottle.........i'm going to a obama worshiping buddies house, split a bowl with him.....hes pretty depressed about now.........

  • txgypsy||

    ooooops, forgot to hit enter when typed hours ago......

  • some guy||

    Well, Romney held up his end, but thanks to a lackluster performance from the President, I got through the night sober.

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