The politics of zombies

I recently became aware that some people are supporting Zombie Reagan as a presidential candidate in the 2008 election. Their Reagan nostalgia is understandable, but the idea is doomed to failure.
Most people don’t know this, but zombies are not eligible for the office of President. After the constitutional crisis of 1945 (in which Zombie Roosevelt challenged the succession of Harry Truman), the Constitution was amended to specifically prohibit undead Presidents. The amendment has been the focus of continued debate among constitutional scholars, some of whom have suggested that a zombie would have been preferable to certain postwar Presidents. But no proposal to modify the prohibition has gained sufficient support in Congress. This is is probably because undead politicians prefer to pursue careers in the Senate (which has no ban on zombies and no term limit), and would rather not call attention to the issue. Strom Thurmond, Robert Byrd, and Ted Stevens have all reportedly used their influence to ensure that any zombie-related bills die in committee.
Some students of Futurama have suggested that the repeal of the no-zombie-Presidents rule is inevitable, citing the victory of Richard Nixon’s head in the 3000 election. Critics have countered that Nixon’s head was elected President of the United States of Earth, not the USA. And it remains unclear whether a severed head kept alive in a jar meets the legal definition of “undead”. The question will probably have to be settled by the Supreme Court, and we won’t know whether this has happened until new episodes of Futurama are produced.

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