WASHINGTON, April 1 - President Bush announced today that the 2004 presidential election will be canceled due to the war on terrorism and other scheduling conflicts.
Although the U.S. Constitution expressly mandates that presidential elections be held every four years, a little-known clause in the USA Patriot Act, which Congress hastily approved in the wake of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, gives the sitting president the option to cancel a presidential election and remain in office indefinitely if he deems it in the national interest.
In a brief statement from the Oval Office, Bush said, ""A dictatorship would be a heck of a lot easier, there's no question about it," adding, "My administration is where our nation finds hope, where wings take dream."
Upon hearing the news, Democrats on Capitol Hill promptly rolled over and capitulated.
Former Vice President Al Gore was unavailable for comment, as he could not be immediately resuscitated.
Experts agree that the election likely would have been only a formality anyway, with Bush currently enjoying approval ratings unmatched in presidential history. The latest Fox News Opinion Poll put Bush's job performance rating at 165 percent.
The 2004 Re-Election Security Act is the latest in a series of presidential initiatives intended to bring Americans aid and comfort during a time of unprecedented fear and uncertainty. It comes on the heels of Bush's highly touted Economic Security Act and Energy Security Act, as well as the more controversial Snack Food Security Act.
The cancellation of the election is expected to save the oil, energy, accounting, tobacco and gun industries an estimated $50 million in expenditures over the next two years. Instead, the corporations will be asked to make voluntary donations to a new pet project Bush announced today.
Under the plan, known as the Mt. Rushmore Security Act, George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln, and Theodore Roosevelt will be joined by new stone carvings of both George W. Bush and his father, former President George H. W. Bush. A dedication ceremony will be held on the first Tuesday of November 2004 in lieu of the presidential election.
It is not clear when, if ever, another presidential election will be held. But congressional researchers announced today that they had discovered another obscure clause in the USA Patriot Act that sheds some light on the matter.
The clause, buried in a subsection called the Bush Dynasty Security Act, states that in the event George W. Bush should ever leave office, anyone not named Jeb, Jenna or Barbara is expressly prohibited from governing the country.