In the Halloween mask race, it’s Obama!

In the Halloween mask race, it’s Obama!
Mitt Romney and President Obama masks for sale at an Arlington, Va., party store.
(Olivier Douliery /Abaca Press/MCT)

With the presidential election so close to Halloween every four years, it’s no wonder we start conflating them.

One retailer with what is said to be a sound predictor track record -- retail sales equal electoral votes -- reports that President Obama masks are outselling Mitt Romney masks, both priced at $19.99. (Although why were Obama masks originally $24.99 and Romney masks only $21.99?)

A president is almost always more recognizable than the challenger, which may account for part of this. But do people wear the masks of those they admire, or those they want to mock?

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Both, according to Sally Foster, who’s a retired psychology professor at MiraCosta College in San Diego County; people can costume themselves as those they “emulate or abhor.”

Office Depot must be doing a land-office business in binders this Halloween; “women in binders” has got to be the political-trope costume of the year.

The White House has canceled this year’s Halloween festivities because of super storm Sandy, but here’s what it looked like in 2009, and in earlier White Houses. And under that makeup, could that be Vice President Al Gore, dressed as “Underdog”?

NPR posted this amusing apology to a little Colorado girl who ended up in tears for Halloween -- for political, not ghostly, reasons.


And my colleague Robin Abcarian ran through some scary election scenarios.

Some of the real frights are political, and you’ll see them between now and election day, mostly in swing states and in cities. They’ll take the form of calls and fliers and emails that are made and circulated and posted anonymously, telling people that election day has been changed, or canceled, or other tricks to suppress the vote. There’s the real fraud, not the virtually nonexistent ballot-box kind that some conservative alarmists are sounding their klaxons about.

I think I can predict with certainty that this is going to happen again this year, and I even expect some of the notices will say things like “Because of Hurricane Sandy … “

Hey, wait. Stuff like this has already started happening, in Florida and Virginia.

How about that? I guess I know what I’ll be going as this Halloween: a psychic.


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Follow Patt Morrison on Twitter @pattmlatimes


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