Winging It

The media says John Kerry isn’t warm and fuzzy. Or funny. What do they know?

Showing off his new campaign plane yesterday, with space for 72 members of the news media, the senator cheerfully announced: “We have about 23, 24 parachutes on board. We’re going to hand them out according to good stories, bad stories.”

It’s unclear if Kerry was angling for good stories about his new wheels, but he got ‘em anyway. (Everybody must be bored.)

USA Today’s Martin Kasindorf waxed eloquent about the number of outlets for laptops and cell phones, and the stand-up bar “for socializing” between the two rear cabins. (That latter feature drew “loud approval” from the press corps, Kasindorf reported. Obviously, having enough juice is of crucial importance.)

David M. Halbfinger of the New York Times wrote that Kerry’s days of unglamorous, anonymous landings at the nation’s airfields — so “je ne sais quoi” — are a thing of the past. With the motto “The Real Deal” emblazoned on the engine cowlings and “John Kerry” and “President” on the fuselage, the Boeing 757-236 can obviously belong to only one guy. (At least until the charter expires November 2.)

So far, Halbfinger reports, the plane has no name, although an early favorite among the press corps is “Hair Force One.” CNN posts other suggestions: “Hair France” and “Air Force One in Waiting.”

Memo to national political editors: It may be time for a change of crews.

Susan Q. Stranahan

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Susan Q. Stranahan wrote for CJR.