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America’s top 11 politicians, ranked by how they’d do in the ring

Let's get ready to rumble (in accordance with the rules imposed by the McCain-Feingold Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act of 2002).


Aaron Sankin


Posted on May 15, 2015   Updated on May 28, 2021, 7:56 pm CDT

This week, the 68-year-old former Massachusetts governor and 2012 GOP presidential nominee Willard “Mitts” Romney announced he would be squaring off against former heavyweight champ Evander Holyfield in a charity boxing match.

So much of politics is portrayed in the media as the legislative equivalent of a bare-knuckle brawl rather than a bunch of rich lawyers in expensive suits chatting with lobbyists and voting to rename post offices. But, hey, if you can’t beat an over-used cliché, join an over-used cliché. The following is a list of American political figures ranked on how they’d probably fare in a fight.

1) Harry Reid

The outgoing majority leader was a boxer before entering politics, so he starts with a clear advantage. Some right-wing conspiracy theorists speculated his recent eye injury wasn’t the result of a weight lifting accident, as the senator claimed, but actually the result of a beat down he received at the hands of mafia goons. It’s probably not true; but, if it was, you can only imagine the damage Reid inflicted on the other guys.

2) Hillary Clinton

Watch out, the second Hillz steps into the ring, someone better yell “WorldStar” because shit is about to go down.

3) Jeb Bush

4) Bernie Sanders

Vermont’s scrappy socialist has his advanced age going against him, but don’t underestimate his powerful left hook.

5) Joe Biden

Joe “Bare Knuckle” Biden is a legend on Providence’s back-alley street fighting scene. However, his flashy fighting style isn’t particularly technical and that leaves him prone to gaffes.

6) Barack Obama

During Barack “Emperor” Obama’s first term, the smart money would be to bet against the Kenyan Killer. The president initially ran on a platform of changing the way Washington worked through the power of compromise, conversation, and empathetic hugs. That did not turn out so well. But, as his tenure in the Oval Office wore on, the president has developed a killer instinct—pummeling his political opponents through the use of executive orders. So he’s clearly developing a more aggressive stance.

7) Ruth Bader Ginsburg

The Notorious R.B.G. may be slight of stature but her daily workout is based on a routine created by the Canadian Air Force and inlcludes “weight-lifting, elliptical glider, stretching exercises, [and] push-ups.” If the question is, “bro, do you even lift?” the R.G.B.’s answer is clearly “all day, everyday.”

8) Darrell Issa

Issa talks a big game and his “#Benghazi” neck tattoo is certainly intimidating, but he’s not in it for the long haul. Look for the former chairman of the House Oversight Committee to lose steam after three or four rounds.

9) John Boehner

Boxing is all about endurance and the Speaker of the House’s training regimen of Marlboros and dirty martinis isn’t known for building stamina.

10) Ted Cruz

It’s unclear if Cruz, whose mastery of political theater rocketed him to prominence in the span of a single term, understands the difference between professional wrestling and actual boxing.

11) Donald Trump

Terrible fighter, just embarrassingly awful. Trump is all talk until his steps into the ring and then it’s a guaranteed pummeling. Even so, his over the top persona is guaranteed to draw a crowd. How much would you pay to watch someone uppercut Donald Trump so hard the drugged Pomeranian that’s been napping atop of his head for the past two decades wakes up, shake itself off, circles twice, and then falls back to sleep? The correct answer is “all the money in the world.”

Correction: Issa is the former chairman of the House Oversight Committee.

Photo via Aberro Creative/pixabay

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*First Published: May 15, 2015, 8:52 pm CDT