Show of Paws: Are Pets in Politics Cute or Out of Place?

By November 01 | See Comments

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Election Day 2013 is just around the corner, and that means political ads, rallies, events, and debates are pretty much nonstop. With the need for public support, those running for office are looking for any way into the hearts and minds of their constituents, and what better way than by showing their support of pets -- or the pets' support of them! Here are a few cases that truly put the “paw” in politics.

1. The Cats who Stopped the Subway

If you live in New York, you are certainly aware of the heated Mayoral election that has been taking the city by storm. You may also have heard about the two kittens that ended up on the subway tracks this past August. While the two events may seem unrelated, it seems any opportunity to gain public support is going to be jumped all over, and what tugs at the heart strings more than a couple of adorable kittens in danger?

Mayoral candidate Joe Lhota said he wouldn't have shut down the subway to rescue the cats, whereas Anthony Weiner went so far as to say he would have jumped on the tracks himself to save the kittens.

2. Dogs for Wendy Davis

Taking an interesting approach to getting support for her gubernatorial campaign, Texas governor hopeful Wendy Davis is using her dog, Moots, to spread the word about her run for office. While not as far-reaching as other tactics (having gained just under 2k “likes” on Facebook), she has certainly found a new and creative way to use pets for the advancement of one’s cause.

3. Stubbs, the Cat Mayor

Taking pets in politics a million steps further, Talkeetna, Alaska said “enough with people” and elected a cat, Stubbs, as their honorary Mayor. While he isn’t exactly known for his restructuring of the local government or saving taxpayers any money, he has become a widely known figurehead. The opinion of many Talkeetna locals: “Anything’s better than a human.”

Related Link: Mayor of Alaskan Town is a Cat

4. Obamacare Dinged by LOLCats

Many people have strong opinions regarding the Affordable Care Act (aka Obamacare), but with all the noise surrounding the issue, it's difficult to have your opinion stand out. One representative who is less than supportive of the changes has chosen to use the "LOLCats” format to express his frustrations. Regardless of where you stand on the issue, you have to give Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Ca.) credit for seeing the potential in taking a goofy meme and appropriating it for his own ends. Take a look at 8 Cats Who Called 1-800-Obamacare But Still Couldn't Get Healthcare.

5. Dogs Against Romney

In 2012’s polarizing presidential election, it seemed like nothing was off limits, including pets. One well documented case of a pet being used against their owner occurred after Romney’s misguided attempt at traveling with his dog, Seamus, by strapping his crate to the roof of the car. Outraged pet parents across America formed Dogs Against Romney with the goal of keeping Romney out of office. Whether or not they tipped the scales, this group managed to collect upwards of 100k “likes” on Facebook and mentions on major news networks, thereby proving that the way we treat our pets can impact the way people view us.

What do you think about including our furry pals in the electoral process? Would any of these campaigns have swayed your vote? Let us know in the comments below.

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