Last Friday was Groundhog Day, the day of each year when President Punxsutawney Phil comes out to give his annual State of the Forest address. After the political turmoil of the past year, the speech was highly anticipated, with many wondering what stance the president would take on immigration.
While the address had been touted as one that would bridge the divide between fractured animal communities, the president failed to extend any substantive olive branches, and the speech elicited a menagerie of controversy in the news.
“This speech was an assault on the common animal,” responded Bernie Loonders, who delivered the official opposition response.
“Over the past 10 years, the top 1 percent of the top 1 percent of the top 1 percent has received 99.9998 percent of all new healthcare. It’s time to tear down the wall and let all the taxes in!”
The choice of Loonders to present the opposition response was curious, since he is a political independent who technically does not represent either of the major parties. We tried to ask young voters whether the state of the opposition should be defined by the positions of a political independent, but every animal we spoke to swooned at the sound of Loonders’ name.
Coverage was more positive on other outlets. Sean Parrotty of Fox News simply reread the president’s speech in its entirety while the banner below him flashed, “Best speech ever? Fact check says: Yes!”
Many expected immigration, a prominent plank of President Phil’s campaign, to be a major theme of the speech. The president did spend a good deal of time on the topic, though he generally adhered to the relatively restrained language on his teleprompter.
“You see these beavers coming across the border, thousands of them. Do you think it’s a coincidence that innocent, hard-working animals are losing their trees? I think the evidence is damming.”
That particular comment drew widespread ire. SeaNN’s Rachel Minnow was one of the most outspoken.
“Damming?” she yelled on her program, straining the ears of her viewers and the bounds of objective reporting.
“That is a clear attempt to demonize the beaver community and link all of them to crime, even though beavers commit crime at a lower rate than natural-born citizens. Never has a president been so disconnected from logic and the truth since Horse W. Bush claimed that Saddam Moossein had weapons of mouse destruction.”
But perhaps the most notable topic of the speech was the one that wasn’t covered — Bob Moler’s ongoing investigation into the president’s campaign activities. It has been alleged that the campaign colluded with foreign powers to rig the election in his favor.
Some expected a rebuke of an investigatory process that he has called corrupted, but others were glad the president kept quiet.
“Is good he did not talk about investigation,” said local resident Boris Bearovich. “I think is, how you say, partisan witch hunt distraction. Very bad.”
Meanwhile in Washington, Donald Trump saw himself in the bathroom mirror, leading him to hideout in the Oval Office. Traditionally, this would signal six more weeks of winter, but if he has access to Twitter in there, then believe me, folks, it’ll feel like much longer than that.