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The phone rang and Alex Ramirez woke with a start. The blue tinged light told him it was a horrible predawn hour. The clock on his nightstand told him it was 4:12 am. He glanced down and realized that he had again passed out while changing the night before, leading to that unpleasant sensation in which he woke up wearing part of his sleepwear and part of his suit from the previous day. This time it was pajama bottoms coupled with a dress shirt and tie. His blackberry rang again and Alex grabbed it.

“Holy shit Weinstein, do you know what time it is?”

“Alex, we need to talk, something bad is coming.”

“It better be bad for you to call me at a time like this, you know I like my beauty sleep.”

“I’m not fucking around Alex, this is serious.”

“How bad is it?”

“Really bad.”

Alex unconsciously tightened his tie. “Okay, go on. What is it?”

“I don’t know.”

“What the fuck do you mean you don’t know?”

“I don’t know what it is. But it’s going to be really bad.”

Alex sighed, which turned into a rough cough. He hated this time of the morning. “Weinstein, how do you know it’s going to be so bad if you don’t even know what it is?”

“Because whatever it is, it’s going to cost us the climate debate.”

“And how is that supposed to happen?”

“I don’t know! But I just got word from Landstrom, who got a tip from someone in Newman’s office, who got a leak from the press team for the RNC that we’re about to get hit with something that will turn the entire climate debate on its head.”

Alex thumped his head against the headboard of his queen-sized bed in frustration. Resigned to being awake, he got up began to pace around his oversized bedroom, tripping over the sections of his suit that he had managed to remove the night before.

“Fuck, Weinstein . . . Have you considered that it might be an exaggeration? Or maybe Newman is just fucking with you?”

“No, he wouldn’t.”

“Newman’s been fucking with you this whole session.”

“Not on this, he wants a climate bill as much as we do. He knows how much money will be coming to his state in all that green-energy shit.”

“You still don’t know that it’s going to be that bad.”

“No, because right after I heard from Landstrom I called Ben Paulson, and he talked to John Calhoun, who got word from Oliver Williams that the Majority Leader says they’re coming out with something tomorrow that’s going to crush us on climate change.”

“Crush us?”

“The Majority Leader told Williams that after tomorrow they’ve got ownership on the issue and any bill we put up is D.O.F.A.”

Alex rubbed his eyes. “Dee-what?”

“Dead On Fucking Arrival, Alex!”

“Look, I, I don’t know!” Alex said, throwing up his arm as though the empty room would see and appreciate his gesture of annoyance, “There’s nothing I can really do for you when I don’t know what it is.”

“I can’t figure it out! If it was a new study, I would have read about it. If there was polling out right now, I would have known about it. Is it a defection? What if it’s Newman?”

“You just said Newman won’t fuck with you on this.”

“There’s no way he’s fucking with us, which is why I’m afraid that’s what’s happening.”

“You need to get some sleep. You sound delirious.”

“What if Newman’s bailing?”

Alex collapsed back onto the satin sheets of his bed, knowing he wouldn’t be able to get back to sleep but committed to trying anyway.

“Newman’s not bailing, Weinstein, relax.”

“How can I relax? We’ve been prepping for the climate debate for six months, and I find out now that we’re about to get completed fucked!”

“Look, it’s four in the morning. You have no clue what the GOP has, or if they’ve even got anything at all. At this point there’s nothing to do about it. Get some sleep, and deal with it tomorrow.”

“Alright, but Alex -”

“What?”

“I’ve got a bad feeling about this.”

—-

Real Clear Politics: Morning Roundup
GOP Gives the Climate Debate a Sunny New Outlook
By Samuel Post
The Washington news cycle is being dominated early this Monday morning by news from the office of the Senate Majority Leader and the Republican National Committee of a major development in the climate debate.
“From this day forward,” stated RNC Chairman Bruce Richardson, “we shall refer to the phenomenon so pessimistically labeled as ‘global warming’ by a new name; from this day forward, global warming will be called ‘The Extended Summer Effect.’”
Mr. Richardson and Majority Leader Thompson could not be reached for further comment at this time, but promised, “We will continue to focus on this important development to the debate regarding the Extended Summer Effect.”
How the GOP seeks to do so is currently a point of great speculation. Although there have been no confirmed reports, rumors are floating around the Capitol that Congressional Republicans have been moving to amend all bills concerning the environment to replace any use of the term ‘global warming’ with ‘the extended summer effect.’
The blogosphere has been buzzing over the new term, and a senior RNC official in new media said with confidence that it would “totally be going viral.” Aside from general chatter over the name change, a large deal of focus has been on who created the term. While several names have been thrown around, the consensus seems to be that it was crafted by GOP strategist Andrew Ellicott.

——–

Check back next Tuesday for the second chapter in this special three-part fiction piece.

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Jake Laperruque

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