Ale to the Chief

This past Tuesday, we re-elected Barack Obama president of the United States. As the Exponent’s designated beer drinker, I credit Obama’s crushing Electoral College victory to his well-documented love of beer.

For those who might not follow our president’s drinking habits, Obama has been homebrewing in the White House since 2011. Occasionally, he’ll share a bottle of his homebrew with a Medal of Honor winner or some lucky patron at a campaign stop.

White House chefs brew a porter, an ale and a blonde ale, all of which use honey from Michelle’s beehives on the South Lawn. A couple weeks ago, I started a batch of the honey porter. It’s a relatively easy beer to brew because the recipe uses malt extracts — a shortcut for people who don’t want to mash grains by hand. Check whitehouse.gov for the recipe.

On the other end of the spectrum, there is something that Mitt Romney, a man who’s never had a drink (except for a single beer in his “wayward” youth), can never understand about America. As artist and songwriter Will Newman quipped, having a net worth of $171 million must be like $400 million to someone who never spends money on drinks.

How could anyone who’s never been drunk understand why his or her constituents would voluntarily drink something like Four Loko or Listerine mouthwash? We need a president who understands the desperation of a college freshman trying to get his or her young hands on a 30-rack.

Barack Obama is that man. During his appearance at the 2012 Iowa State Fair, a man in the audience yelled out, “Four more beers!” So Obama bought four more beers, quipping that he “told him he had to register to vote, though, to get one of the beers.”

America makes a lot more sense after a few beers. We are the wealthiest nation in the world, but our health care system ranks 37th in the world. Our politicians blather on about the importance of family and “traditional” values, yet we have the highest divorce and teen pregnancy rates in the developed world.

We get off to the overarching ideal of democracy, yet we’ve orchestrated or supported coups d’état against democratically elected governments in Iran, Guatemala, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Chile, Argentina, Nicaragua and other nations with more suspect democratic qualifications.

This Tuesday showed that America is not ready for a president who’s never been drunk. But most readers are probably right in surmising that this doesn’t matter one whit. Ale to the chief!