Special Interests Draft

[Monday Night Football Music]

[Bob Costas] “Live from Radio City Music Hall, it’s the 2017 Special Interests Draft on ESPN.”

[Camera pans across a crowded auditorium of old white men in suis. The camera then swoops up and comes to rest on an overhead balcony where four other white men are sitting behind a big ugly desk]

[Bob Costas] “Hello folks, I’m Bob Costas here with my colleagues Joe Buck, Chris Berman and the incomparable Mel Kiper Jr. and we are excited to bring you this year’s Special Interests Draft, live from New York City.”

[Joe Buck] “That’s right Bob, tonight the most powerful special interest groups in the country have gathered together to draft some of the most influential politicians in America to help further their personal agendas.”

[Chris Berman] “It’s sure to be a rumblin’ bumblin’ stumblin’ good time. The Citizen’s United ruling ensures that these special interest groups have absolutely no limit to the amount of money they can donate to these politicians in order to curry their favor. Last year over $3 billion dollars was doled out.”

[Bob Costas] “You bet Chris, these organizations are infinitely more powerful than regular citizens when it comes to political impact.”

[Joe Buck] “Hey in America it’s more money, more power, right Mel?”

[Mel Kiper Jr.] “I’m locked in a room watching college football for 364 days a year, so I don’t know too much about politics, but this whole thing seems really messed up.”

[Bob Costas] “Right you are Mel. Now let’s turn to the stage where Big Oil is about to make the first pick.”

[An elaborate stage with a podium in the middle. Charles and David Koch walk up to the podium amid cheers from the crowd.]

[Charles Koch] “With the first pick in the 2017 Special Interests Draft, Big Oil selects…”

[Charles Koch hands the envelope to David Koch]

[David Koch] “Texas Senator Ted Cruz!”

[Ted Cruz jumps out of his chair and kisses his wife and hugs his children. The camera trails him as he makes his way on stage and shakes the Koch Brothers’ hands. They hand him a hat that says “Drill baby drill” and the three pose for a picture.]

[Bob Costas] “The obvious pick for Big Oil, and also the smart pick, wouldn’t you say Chris?”

[Chris Berman] “Oh without a doubt, Bob. Ted ‘punch me in the face’ Cruz has proven again and again that he has no fixed ideology or principals. His influence can be bought easily, and Big Oil spent over $100 million dollars last year to further their interests, with 88% of that money going to Republicans. They got themselves a keeper in Cruz.”

[Mel Kiper Jr.] “I thought elected officials are supposed to serve their constituents, not giant corporations who only care about their own profit margins?”

[Joe Buck] “Nice one Mel! Let’s go back to the stage now as NRA head Wayne LaPierre and the Gun Rights lobby appear ready to make their pick.”

[Wayne LaPierre approaches the podium with an AR-15 assault rifle in his hand]

[Wayne LaPierre] “The only thing that can stop senseless gun violence in America is more guns. With that in mind, the Gun Rights lobby selects…Ohio Governor John Kasich.”

[Kasich raises both arms in triumph. He walks up on stage and shakes LaPierre’s hand. LaPierre hands Kasich the AR-15 assault rifle, which Kasich promptly shoots into the air. All the Democrats in Radio City Music Hall drop to the ground in panic. The Republicans whip out their pistols.]

[Bob Costas] “I don’t think Mr. Kasich will have to worry about any weapons charges with that outburst, now that the gun lobby has his back.”

[Joe Buck] “Right Bob, and what the Gun Rights folks just did was lock down an asset. Kasich had been wavering recently, advocating for restrictions on access to guns for people who are mentally ill or on a terrorist watch list. Now that he’s been drafted, the gun lobby can expect Kasich to fall in line.”

[Mel Kiper Jr.] “So because they give him money he’s going to support pro-gun legislation? Isn’t that…illegal?”

[Joe Buck] “Not in America!”

[Chris Berman] “I’ll tell you whose not going to be happy about this pick: Florida Senator Marco Rubio. Last year ‘little’ Marco was second only to Donald Trump in donations from pro-gun organizations. He was really counting on them tonight.”

[Rubio sitting in a chair with his head in his hands]

[Bob Costas] “Speaking of Trump, he has to be a little surprised his name hasn’t been called yet.”

[Joe Buck] “K Street has been hesitant to invest in the president given his lack of competence. But maybe he can turn things around now as his old friend Wall Street has the next pick.”

[Chris Berman] “Yes, financial organizations donated $1.1 billion dollars to politicians in 2016, the most of any sector. This would be a huge pick for Donald ‘grab em’ buy the pussy’ Trump.”

[Sheldon Adelson approaches the mic]

[Sheldon Adelson] “With the third overall pick, Wall Street selects…Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders!”

[An audible gasp is heard throughout the crowd. Sanders stands up and shuffles down the aisle. He keeps his head down as he walks towards the stage, trying to avoid eye contact with fellow Democrats. Adelson slips a wad of cash into his suit jacket pocket and they pose for a picture.]

[Joe Buck] “UN-BE-LIEV-ABLE. Bernie Sanders, one of the most outspoken opponents of Wall Street greed, has just been drafted by the very institution he built his career fighting. This is an absolute shocker.”

[Chris Berman] “I agree. I think Wall Street realized they needed to neutralize Bernie as a threat. The senator had been the face of the 99% movement, but not after tonight.”

[Mel Kiper Jr.] “I honestly don’t get it. Do any of these politicians have morals, or are they all just looking to get paid off?…Hello? Can somebody answer me?”

[Bob Costas] “One second Mel. Our sideline reporter Rachel Nichols is with Sanders now.”

[Rachel Nichols] “Senator Sanders, many of your supporters look to you to be a voice for the impoverished and the needy. Are you afraid this draft pick might affect that image?”

[Bernie Sanders] “I will always speak out against inequality, I will now just be a lot richer while I do it.”

[Rachel Nichols] “Well said Bernie. Bob, back to you.”

[Bob Costas] “Thank you Rachel. Now after that last pick we received reports that Donald Trump stormed out of the auditorium.”

[Joe Buck] “I understand why he’s angry. The President of the United States should always expect to go in the top three considering the amount of influence he has. What you’re seeing here tonight is a lot of special interest groups realizing that it may just be too dangerous to attach their agenda to this president. They appear to not believe he can help them.”

[Chris Berman] “And why should they believe it? This president has done plenty of posturing since coming into office, but is yet to deliver any tangible results.”

[Bob Costas] “Alright coming up next is Dark Money. For those of you unfamiliar, Dark Money comes from anonymous donors, and the source of the money is unknown.”

[Mel Kiper Jr.] “What do you mean the source of the money is unknown?”

[Bob Costas] “I mean the money can come from anywhere. Criminals, foreign governments, you name it.”

[Mel Kiper Jr.] “And this money can be used to court the favor of American politicians?”

[Bob Costas] “Yes.”

[Mel Kiper Jr.] “And the public will never know how this money might influence their elected representative?”

[Bob Costas] “Exactly.”

[Mel Kiper Jr.] “Are you serious?”

[Bob Costas] “I am.”

[Mel Kiper Jr.] “WHAT THE FU…”

[Joe Buck cuts Mel Kiper Jr. off]

[Joe Buck] “OKAY! Looks like Dark Money is ready. Picking on their behalf is Russian President Vladimir Putin.”

[Putin saunters onto the stage with a smirk on his face. He leans into the microphone.]

[Vladimir Putin] “Hello America. I am very pleased to represent Russ, er..Dark Money as we make our pick in your lovely draft.”

[Clears throat]

[Vladimir Putin] “With the fourth pick in the 2017 Special Interests Draft, Dark Money selects Mr. President Donald Trump.”

[Donald Trump bursts out from backstage and gives Putin a big hug. Trump then abruptly steps forward in front of the podium]

[Donald Trump] “I am very very pleased to be drafted by Dark Money tonight. Of course I should have been taken awhile ago, but lets not worry about that now. I just want to let you all know that although this draft pick means none of you will ever know the true source of my income or where my allegiances lie, you should just take me at my word that I am here to support America.”

[Putin steps forward and whispers in Trump’s ear]

[Donald Trump] “Also, this seems like as good a time as any to let you all know that the United States is lifting all sanctions against Russia. Thank you.”

[The crowd applauds as Trump and Putin disappear backstage]

[Bob Costas] “Well there you have it, the president of the United States is getting money from anonymous sources whose interests will remain hidden from the public.”

[Mel Kiper Jr.] “What do you mean anonymous sources? That was Vladimir Putin! Our president is in the bag for Russia.”

[Chris Berman] “Now Mel we don’t know that for sure. It’s not like we have Trump’s tax returns.”

[Mel Kiper Jr.] “I don’t know a thing about politics and I can see what’s happening here. You have to be blind or dumb not to see it.”

[Chris Berman] “I don’t think we need to resort to name calling.”

[Mel Kiper Jr.] “Shut-up Chris! You’re truly an idiot if you can’t see that Trump is working for Russia. Also, you’re nicknames for people suck.”

[Joe Buck] “You’re way out of line here Mel. I’m going to need you to apologize to Chris.”

[Mel Kiper Jr.] “You know what, screw this. I’m going back to my room to watch college football.”

[Mel Kiper Jr. rips off his mic and storms off.]

[Bob Costas] “Sorry about that folks. I guess Mel is only good for football drafts. Anyway, sit tight as there is plenty more of the Special Interests Draft coming your way. Martin Shkreli and Big Pharma are on the clock. We’ll see you after the break.”

(All statistics via OpenSecrets.org)

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