Can Santa deliver White House view?

By Ned Cantwell: State columnist

Dear Santa,

I have been a very good boy the last few years with the possible exception of letting it slip I maybe pitched a no-hitter in a World Series game. But, no kidding, my picture really was on a baseball card a long time ago.

Do you get Fox News up there in the North Pole, Santa? If so, you may be starting to suspect I want to be president of the United States. I know, I know. Sometime back I appointed that columnist guy czar in charge of reminding people Bill Richardson is not running for president. That was a sham.

Thing is, I had to get New Mexicans off this Richardson for president kick until I got re-elected governor. And I did, by a whopping margin. I’ll have my people send you some stuff on that. You’ll see New Mexico is leading the nation in progressive policies except we still have cockfighting, which I wish certain people would just shut the hell up about.

Kris — may I call you Kris? — I want to be president. I really, really want to be president. The idea of becoming president first occurred to me when I was 7 months old. My mother saw a smile on my tiny face and thought it was gas, but even then I was picturing myself in the Oval Office.

My buddies would be dreaming about their first bike and all I could think about is who would be my first secretary of state. I cannot even guess how often I was sent to grammar school time-out for humming “Hail to the Chief” during class. Later on, when all the other guys were fantasizing about what might happen on prom night, I kept picturing my date on those winding stairs at the White House. My only lust was for Air Force One.

Santa, I’m ready. Here I am, governor of a wonderful southwestern state, hero of Hispanics, former Congressman, former delegate to the United Nations. I’ve busted my butt flying around the country helping other Democrats get elected. I’ve weaned myself from super-sized Snickers bars and shed 30 pounds.

The stage is being set for the 2008 presidential run, and, guess what? Bill for prez isn’t gaining traction. The stupid media has gone ga-ga over this Barack Obama charm machine. Barack Obama? What’s he done? A senator for a couple of years? Big whoopin’ deal. I know he’s a cool-looking black guy, but has he ever jetted off to negotiate with the North Koreans?

When not gushing over Barack, reporters are following Hillary around like little puppy dogs. Kris, promise me you’ll keep this strictly confidential, but we don’t need a woman president. She’ll walk into the Oval Office some morning all in a tizzy-fit about Bill’s latest shenanigans and — POOF — there goes Medicare.

Here’s what I want, Santa. See, you know a lot of people. Heck, you know everybody! So, this year, all I ask is you put a little slip of paper in all the presents you deliver. On it I want you to write this message:

“Barack Obama? We need a president, not a fashion model. Hillary Clinton — national leader or she-devil? Think Big Bill!”

If you could do that little thing, Santa, I won’t forget it. And, oh, by the way. My first secretary of state? Why not a fat old guy with a beard? Just a thought.

Your friend,

Ned Cantwell is a syndicated New Mexico columnist who still believes. He can be reached at