Speed Reads

2016 Watch

The Daily Show shops for a brand of president other than Bush vs. Clinton, the 'Coke and Pepsi of politics'

Tuesday night's Daily Show took a serious look at presidential branding, and the possibility that the 2016 race will be between two established "brands," Hillary Clinton and Jeb Bush. Correspondent Michael Che found at least one person excited about the return of "the Coke and Pepsi of politics," Republican strategist Chip Saltsman. Che played along: "Why would you want to shop for a president at Family Dollar," since you might get an "off-brand" commander-in-chief like Obama, he asked. "We tried our black-guy phase. It's over. Now we need to get back to what works."

NYU history professor Jonathan Zimmerman played devil's advocate, arguing that we don't need a name brand in the Oval Office. When Zimmerman says that a name doesn't matter, Che almost stumps him by asking if he'd vote for a candidate named Phillip Hitler. But Che did more than spitball name-brand politics — he also resurrected an old brand name, by trying to create a campaign for Lili Van Buren, "an offspring of a president so forgettable he wouldn't offend either the left or the right." Whoever wrote her stump speech deserves a raise. --Peter Weber