MODERATOR: Welcome to the first World Science Fiction Presidential Debate, sponsored by Tor Books and Baen Books. Let’s start right off. What do you think about the threat of clones and/or cyborgs replacing middle-class workers? Mr. President?
BUSH: I’m against it. In my administration, no cloning will go for money. I was talking with Tommy Franks just the other day about cloning. The President has to be strong on cloning. You have to make decisions. My opponent has been in the Senate since the end of eternity, and he has never once made any. Decisions. And that’s bad. The American people expect cloning to be against God’s will. It’s like abortion with stem cells, which I supported very much, it’s important, it’s the beginning of the start of something, but there’s morality. The President has to be moral.
MODERATOR: Senator Kerry, a rebuttal?
KERRY: I’m glad you asked that question. Considering that cloning is, at the moment, a theoretical venture, we must be certain that what I voted for is what was enacted, which, if you consider what this administration has accomplished, is very little. It’s a complicated issue. The President has shown no leadership on this subject, and it’s a subject we can’t approach with folded hands. My plan will accomodate clones and non-clones, it will allow cyborg technology to be explicated by the best minds in the universe, and it will cut the deficit in half.
MODERATOR: How do you feel about genre-bending movements such as The New Weird and Interstitial Arts? Are they a threat to the purity of science fiction and fantasy? Senator Kerry?
KERRY: I believe that we can have a large movement all together, and that the tent we live in — or, rather, everyone here but the President and I and, I’m sorry to say, you Mr. Moderator [chuckles] — that tent — it’s large and can contain multitudes. What’s new and weird is the President’s approach in Iraq. If we had made alliances, we would have an interstitial approach to foreign policy, but at the moment, the failed policies of this administration have given us a maze of death which our troops are dying inside.
MODERATOR: Mr. Bush?
KERRY: What’s new and weird is my opponent’s love for Saddam Hussein. Look, I don’t know half of what he’s talking about, I don’t understand any of the words he’s using, but I know I’m right. And that’s not weird, and it’s not new.