Alexandra Petri: The right answers to The New York Times candidate questionnaire

FILE - In this Monday, May 13, 2019, file photo, Washington Gov. Jay Inslee speaks in Olympia, Wash. Washington has become the latest West Coast state to enact broad sanctuary protections that restrict all local authorities from asking about people's immigration status. Inslee signed the measure Tuesday, May 21, 2019, implementing the new rules. (AP Photo/Rachel La Corte, File)

The New York Times made a wonderful piece of content asking 21 of the 2020 Democratic candidates 18 questions, all offering various degrees of illumination. Everyone did a pretty good job on these questions, but I regret to say that no one got them exactly right, and that is probably a bad sign for the debates! I have the right answers, and they are here:

1. In an ideal world, would anyone own handguns?

You have set out to trick me! But I am too clever for your games! Yes, in an ideal world, there would be handguns aplenty, one for every hand. But naturally ownership would be a thing of the past! They would all be owned in common, through socialism!

2. Would your focus be improving the Affordable Care Act or replacing it with single payer?

My focus would be on INFRASTRUCTURE!

3. Do you think it’s possible for the next president to stop climate change?

Yes, but only if the next president absorbs a lot of carbon. I think I am a greater carbon sink than my opponents, and you would have to put me in the middle of the ocean, but I am confident it can be done.

4. Do you think Israel meets international standards of human rights?

*glances around nervously* Uh, to whom am I speaking? Is this in an ideal world? Sorry, could you clarify? I mean, if we're in an ideal world, ah, well, you know I love international standards of human rights, as who would not? *starts to sweat* Also solutions and states, numbers of states. But then, Bibi Netanyahu is, well, once you realize the complications and take everything into account, and, uh, gripped him warmly by the hand, stared into his eyes and called him "brother," as in that ideal world we all surely would. I think that answers your question.

5. Who is your hero, and why?

My opponents will say that their heroes are their wives. All of them are wrong except for Jay Inslee. My hero is Jay Inslee's wife.

6. Would there be American troops in Afghanistan at the end of your first term?

I swear on my sacred honor, on the grave of my mother, on my hero wife, on the Congress, on my most treasured picture of John Jay, that there would not be. Unless something happens!

7. How many hours of sleep do you get a night?

The spirit of the American voter rises from the lamp to claim me, and I go I know not where. What I am trying to say is that I sleep the right amount, a normal amount.

8. Do you think illegal immigration is a major problem in the United States?

I spit upon you for using the term! You have said the word to entrap me into saying the word!

9. Where would you go on your first international trip as president?


10. Describe the last time you were embarrassed. Why?

Recently I was riding out of a burning building with an elderly man held in my arms, and when I did a manual on my skateboard right as the building exploded behind us, I wobbled a little bit and my Hero Wife saw but she said ultimately that it was relatable.

11. Do you think President Trump has committed crimes in office?

I don't see how you could read all 912 pages of the Mueller report cover to cover (I printed it out in a big font to make it longer) and not come away with the inescapable conclusion that he did crimes.

12. Do you support or oppose the death penalty?

I, for myself, have always opposed it.

13. Should tech giants like Facebook, Amazon and Google be broken up? (Jeff Bezos, the founder and CEO of Amazon, also owns The Washington Post.)

I think that Google and Facebook should be dismantled, but Jeff Bezos, the founder and CEO of Amazon, also owns The Washington Post.

14. Are you open to expanding the size of the Supreme Court?


15. When did your family first arrive in the United States, and how?

On my father's side, we arrived yesterday in a manner of enormous difficulty that I enjoy recounting at every campaign stop. My father worked his way up from nothing, pulling himself up by bootstraps he knitted himself from rat fur in steerage. On my mother's side, we have been here since the Mayflower, and let me tell you, we were the oldest money on the Mayflower, and we have a cherished family story of a time King John apologized to us for no reason.

16. What is your favorite comfort food on the campaign trail?

The American voter, and Abraham Lincoln!

17. What do you do to relax?

A baked potato.

18. Does anyone deserve to have a billion dollars?

I think we have the right to a billion dollars, but in my ideal world nobody would have one in the home, where a child might find it and hurt himself.

Alexandra Petri | The Washington Post

Follow Alexandra Petri on Twitter, @petridishes.