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Presidential election campaign memes and satire

In a light-hearted look at the 2012 presidential campaign, Obama and Romney have become the target of many a meme and satirical video.
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1 of 9 Charlie Osborne/ZDNet

Collegehumor's take on Mitt Romney's presidential campaign resulted in a parody video based on the global hit "Gangnam Style" by South Korean rapper Psy.

Mocking Romney as a rich elitist, the video portrays the Republican presidential candidate living an extravagant lifestyle, complete with tennis and cigars.

The video also refers to Romney's comment that "47 percent of Americans believe they are victims, and will vote for this president no matter what," -- after sticking a 47% sign on a waiter's back.

The video's popularity has resulted in 'Mitt Romney style' being released on iTunes

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2 of 9 Charlie Osborne/ZDNet

In what was no doubt the pullquote of the second presidential debate, it didn't take long for Mitt Romney's "binders full of women" statement to hit the meme circuit.

The candidate told the town hall crowd of undecided voters that when he was selecting his cabinet as Governor of Massachusetts, he didn't get enough candidates who were women to apply for the job.

So, he reached out to advisors, who then brought him "binders full of women" for Romney to make a few selections. 

The famous quote now has its own Tumblr page and Twitter account


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3 of 9 Charlie Osborne/ZDNet

In reference to Romney's comment that "47 percent of Americans believe they are victims, and will vote for this president no matter what," this meme -- depicting President Obama drinking a beer -- quickly flooded the Internet.

A number of similar memes commenting on Romney's public gaffes are floating across the web -- including one where Obama cancels all his election broadcasts in order to replace them with live footage of Mitt Romney.

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4 of 9 Charlie Osborne/ZDNet

It didn't take long before Wisconsin congressman Paul Ryans became the butt of Internet jokes. 

Tapped as a running companion with Mitt Romney, Ryans appears to have captured a fair portion of the female demographic due to his looks -- tumblr shrines notwithstanding. 

He may not be Ridiculously Photogenic Guy,  but if you search on Google, the second most sought-after term is 'shirtless'.

source

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5 of 9 Charlie Osborne/ZDNet

During the first presidential debate, candidate Mitt Romney said that if his bid for office is successful, he plans to cut funding for PBS.

PSB is an education-focused broadcasting channel, and home of shows including Sesame Street, Sherlock and Downton Abbey.

"I'm sorry, Jim, I'm going to stop the subsidy to PBS," Romney said to PBS NewsHour anchor Jim Lehrer.

"I like PBS. I love Big Bird. I actually like you, too. But I'm not going to keep spending money on things, borrowing money from China to pay for it."

In response, PSB said:

"The federal investment in public broadcasting equals about one one-hundredth of one percent of the federal budget. Elimination of funding would have virtually no impact on the nation's debt. Yet the loss to the American public would be devastating."

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6 of 9 Charlie Osborne/ZDNet

Hilary Clinton has long been in the meme ecosystem -- clutching her Blackberry and frankly looking cool.

It reached the point where a website, Texts from Hilary, was created -- and the lady herself responded with a meme in reply to such homage.

But what advice may she have for the presidential hopeful?

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7 of 9 Charlie Osborne/ZDNet

"Malarky" isn't such an uncommon word in the UK. Sure, it is reserved for the over 40s, but probably wouldn't have recieved such Internet acclaim across the pond.

When Vice President Joe Biden responded to how Paul Ryan characterized the handling of the embasy attack which killed Ambassador Stevens, he said:

"With all due respect, that's a bunch of malarkey because not a single thing he said was accurate. ...
This lecture on embassy security -- the congressman here cut embassy security in his budget by $300 million below what we asked for. So much for the embassy security piece ... Governor Romney, before he even knew the facts, before he even knew the ambassador was killed, he was out making a political statement that was panned by media around the world. ...
Before we even knew what happened to the ambassador, the Governor was holding a press conference. That's not presidential leadership." 

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8 of 9 Charlie Osborne/ZDNet

Reaching nearly half a million hits on YouTube, a spoof based on Rapper Jay-Z's song "99 problems", President Obama (acted by Iman Crosson) explains why Mitt Romney's challenge doesn't concern him. 

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9 of 9 Charlie Osborne/ZDNet

"We could have been so much more than just friends with healthcare benefits."

With over 1.5 million hits, a video released by Just New Productions takes a swipe at Obama's presidency. 

"You took ObamaCare so far, but you left me like a dog strapped on Romney's car."

The music is based on Gotye's "Somebody that I used to know", and focuses on issues including security, privacy and economic growth.

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