Just last week, in what some would call an October surprise, one of the best known cats in the United States stepped forward to save Americans from their quadrennial hissing match over who’s going to be the next occupant of the White House.
And like another human presidential candidate of years past, he’s selected an Alaskan as his running mate. He’s extended an invitation to Stubbs the Cat, the long-time mayor of the village of Talkeetna, to serve as his vice president.
"It’s time to let the cat out of the bag — I’m running for President," Morris said last week. "As we head out on the campaign trail, my hope is that Mayor Stubbs and I put our best paw forward in representing all cats everywhere."
Morris’s campaign revolves around a few core feline policy issues: forever homes for all cats, eliminating empty food bowls, and freedom of attitude are the chief planks of his platform. To that end, he and his superPAC, Del Monte Pet Products, have pledged to donate one bowl of 9Lives cat food for each Facebook share of his campaign poster (up to 3,000 pounds of food) to Pets Are Wonderful Support, a San Francisco nonprofit group that works to preserve, support, and nurture the human-animal bond for those most vulnerable.
Morris, like most of the best political cat-didates, comes from humble beginnings. He spent his kittenhood and adolescence in the tough cage-rows of an animal shelter. But in a rags-to-riches tale to beat the most mythical of Horatio Alger stories, he was adopted and soon landed a role as the representative of the 9Lives brand. He hasn’t forgotten where he came from, either; in addition to doing PR for a cat food company, he’s spent many hours and traveled many miles to raise awareness about how awesome shelter cats are and to facilitate adoptions.
There could be a conflict of interest if Morris were to serve as both president of the United States and cat food spokescat, so you orange tabbies might want to start preening to get ready for auditions. Of course, being beholden to large corporations hasn’t been an ethical problem for human presidents, so if Morris does choose to retain his position (strictly on a consultant basis, of course), he certainly wouldn’t be breaking precedent.
For more information on how to support the Morris ticket, visit his Facebook page and click on the Pawquarters button, now through Election Day, Tuesday, Nov. 6. 2012.
Photos from Morris the Cat’s Facebook page