Fake news by Andy Borowitz

MINNEAPOLIS — In her official tea party response to President Barack Obama’s State of the Union address, Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn., offered a bold new policy initiative she called “Don’t Add, Don’t Spell.” Bachmann called the proposal “a reflection of core tea party values” and said it would “deliver the American people from the tyranny of arithmetic, spelling and punctuation.”

In addition to “Don’t Add, Don’t Spell,” Bachmann suggested slashing the federal budget by eliminating nine of the first 10 amendments to the Constitution. “I think you know which one I’d keep,” she chuckled, miming a Western gunslinger with her index fingers.

Bachmann’s odd onscreen appearance, in which she seemed to be staring off-camera for the duration of her speech, was initially blamed on “a squirrel that got into the studio and distracted her,” said one tea party official. But the Minnesota congresswoman offered her own explanation: “I was looking off to one side because I was trying to read off Sarah Palin’s hand.”

In Washington, House Speaker John Boehner held a press conference after the president’s speech to declare, “This infernal week of civility is officially over.” He added, “The American people owe its representatives a huge debt of thanks. Tonight, each of us made the ultimate sacrifice any American can ever be called upon to make: sitting next to a person we despise.”

Republicans Rehearsed Grouchy Facial Expressions for State of the Union

WASHINGTON — In preparation for what most political insiders agree was their most important performance of the year, congressional Republicans spent last week rehearsing their grouchiest facial expressions for Tuesday’s State of the Union address.

For seven grueling days, GOP congressmen were behind closed doors refining their best winces, grimaces and other sourpuss mannerisms under the tutelage of Speaker of the House John Boehner, R-Ohio. “Looking like you’ve just sucked on a lemon is harder than it seems,” said Boehner. “It doesn’t come naturally for everyone like it does for Mitch McConnell.”

Boehner has been employing a “method acting” approach with his House colleagues, urging them to imagine “the most unpleasant thing they can think of — like Keith Olbermann being back on TV.”

But given the new vogue for “civility” that has swept Washington in recent weeks, Boehner is instructing House Republicans to restrain themselves from outbursts like that of Rep. Joe Wilson, R-S.C., who famously shouted, “You lie!” during President Obama’s congressional address in 2009. “If you feel an outburst coming on,” Boehner told his colleagues, “I ask that you instead limit yourself to a simple, tasteful hand gesture.”

Boehner said that while he wanted his Republican members to look as grumpy as possible throughout Obama’s speech, “I want them to show him the same respect we would show to any other foreign visitor to our shores.”

Immediately following the president’s speech, Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., gave the official Republican response, followed by Michele Bachmann, R-Minn., who gave the official moron response.

Award-winning humorist, television personality and film actor Andy Borowitz is author of the book “The Republican Playbook.”

© 2011 Creators Syndicate

Wait, before you go…

If you're reading this, you probably already know that non-profit, independent journalism is under threat worldwide. Independent news sites are overshadowed by larger heavily funded mainstream media that inundate us with hype and noise that barely scratch the surface. We believe that our readers deserve to know the full story. Truthdig writers bravely dig beneath the headlines to give you thought-provoking, investigative reporting and analysis that tells you what’s really happening and who’s rolling up their sleeves to do something about it.

Like you, we believe a well-informed public that doesn’t have blind faith in the status quo can help change the world. Your contribution of as little as $5 monthly or $35 annually will make you a groundbreaking member and lays the foundation of our work.

Support Truthdig