Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Redskins: Good Indicator Of Election Winner?

Hail to the Redskins!

Well, maybe not in every game, but tonight’s anyway.

According to Forbes magazine’s report in 2007, the Washington Redskins are the second-most valuable franchise in the NFL, trailing only the Jerry Jones-led Dallas Cowboys. The fiscal success of this Washington-based franchise is predicated on their preservation of a number of great traditions. Those traditions include the adoration of the famous (or infamous) “Hogs” offensive line established during Joe Gibbs’ first tenure with the team and their live marching band, a throng of musicians the owners continue to squeeze into their 91,000-capacity stadium.

Every Sunday, Washingtonians attach team flags to their radio antennas and jerseys to their backs, waiting for their team to trounce an unsuspecting foe and praying for the Redskins’ ascension to the pinnacle of the NFL. While living as an observant college student in the D.C. area over the past four years, I definitely regard the Redskins’ fan base as one of the most united and dedicated groups that exists in the NFL today.

However, before this edition of “Monday Night Football” (Redskins vs. Steelers), some of these diehard Redskins patrons will have to make a tough decision. During the game, you may see fans that normally bang their fist on their chest and yell violently after a big Clinton Portis resort to giving their star running back a simple round of applause. Instead of standing to witness Santana Moss potentially run a punt back to the house, some fans will probably resign to crossing their legs and watching the return from the big screen.

On Monday night, loyalties will be tested, friendships lost and fans divided. Why?

Well, according to the stats, the Redskins have the ability to predict the White House.

Over the last 17 presidential elections, the Redskins have been the most accurate barometer of success for either the Democratic or Republican Party.

Here’s how it goes: If the Redskins win the game prior to Election Day, the incumbent political party will retain power and regain leadership over the United States. However, if the ’Skins lose before the election, the rival party will defeat the controlling party in the White House, and party power will switch hands.

In other words ... if the ’Skins win, McCain wins. If the ’Skins lose, Obama wins.

The Redskins’ prognostication prowess began in 1936, when the Boston Redskins downed the Chicago Cardinals 13-10, signaling a win for FDR and the incumbent Democratic Party. During the heated presidential race of 1992, Redskins fans already knew Bill Clinton would be our next leader after witnessing their defending Super Bowl champs fall to the New York Giants in a rout at home.

Don’t worry, Washingtonians. Since George W. Bush trounced John Kerry in the 2004 presidential election (even though the Packers had defeated the Redskins on the Sunday prior to voting day), the reliability of the ’Skins’ election barometer has been questioned. Heck, you might just be able to pencil in your vote for Barack Obama and still cheer valiantly for your beloved burgundy and gold. As for me ... well, let’s just say that I’ll be starting Ben Roethlisberger in my fantasy league this week.

So football fans, don’t be afraid to yell “Let’s Go Redskins!” on Monday night.

Or, you can just hold your cheers in until next week. We’ll understand.

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