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Column - King ought to run for president

While watching election results Tuesday, a bright idea occurred to me: Why vote? Why bother? Pollsters can just do a big poll the day of the election and announce the winners that night. Or, better yet - forget the poll - just have CNN newsman John King announce the winners.

King is amazing. With a flick of his wrist, with a pointing finger, he can swoop down like an eagle on any precinct in the nation and tell us exactly what is going on and what is going to happen. I bet he can even tell us, if he wanted to, what color of underwear each voter is wearing. He's truly psychic; he knows everything, especially how every person is going to vote.

King is the master of the universe. With all-knowing seers like him, who needs voting machines?

I used to enjoy election nights, staying up into the wee hours to find out who won. The most exciting one was the Kennedy-Nixon battle in 1960, when Kennedy squeaked by with something like only 100,000 more votes than Nixon. I was 12 at the time. My family and I stayed up most of the night, and in the morning we still weren't 100-percent sure if Kennedy had won or not or if a recount would be ordered.

Nowadays, in this techno-crazy world, elections aren't fun anymore. Every day, multiple times each day, this or that poll tells us what is going to happen. And, sure enough, those polls were right on. The election was, in fact, a Republican "tsunami," just as the polls had predicted. Polls ruin all sense of suspense.

Last night, I started yawning at about 10 p.m. There were only a couple of fun and (to me) welcome surprises - namely Harry Reid and Mark Dayton.

Seeing King's magic fingers in action, for awhile I thought I was dreaming. At one point, like a magician, he pointed to a map of the United States. Abracadabra! The map instantly turned into a crazy-quilt pattern of blue and red - mostly blue - showing all the places in states that had voted for Obama in the 2008 election. Then, just as quickly - presto! - King snapped his fingers, turning that same map mainly red, showing how folks had voted earlier that day. Newsman Wolf Blitzer, looking downcast, walked away from King, obviously feeling he'd been rendered redundant, with nothing to report, because of King's sleight-of-hand magic. Seeing is believing. Who needs words? Who needs old Blitzer?

We should get a petition going demanding King run for president. If he can solve national problems as quick as he can figure out voting behavior, he'd be certain to win. Just imagine. King lifts a hand and flickers a finger or two, and the unemployment rate dives down to zero overnight. He lifts an arm, points skyward, and global warming ceases. Waving both arms and hands, he stops two wars. He wiggles a toe and - voila! - every citizen has health-care insurance. Heckuva guy!

With miracle workers like King, who needs ordinary presidents?

Dennis Dalman, a former reporter for the Echo Press, is a regular contributing columnist to the Opinion page. He is currently the editor of the St. Joseph Newsleader. He can be reached via e-mail at