"Wrong, Newsprint Breath," said Marshbaum arrogantly. "Court said that politicians lie all the time, that promises in a campaign are just that. Promises. Verdict for the politician. Case closed."
"But that occurred before World War I," I said. "Undoubtedly, some court overturned it."
"It's precedent," Marshbaum said. "It's on the books. And the ruling was based upon the First Amendment rights of free expression. Just like the FCC ruling. How about 'Vote for Marshbaum and he'll wash all your dirty laundry?'"
"Marshbaum," I said disgustedly, "there's already too much dirty laundry in the legislature and Congress."
"Problem solved," said a smug Marshbaum, "when the voters see my plan to give everyone a free clothes washer and dryer, they'll overwhelmingly vote for me."
"You can do whatever you want, but just remember that some politicians actually tell the truth."
"Name one who did and got elected!" he demanded.
Honest Abe," I replied.
(For the legal scholars out there, the case of O'Reilly v. Mitchell is cited as 85MISC176, 148NYS, 88 SUP, 1914. For those who aren't lawyers, reflect upon Hitler's belief that "the victor will never be asked if he told the truth." Walter Brasch's next book is Before the First Snow, available in pre-orders at amazon.com)
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