John Boehner, Republican representative from Ohio's eighth Congressional District and ironically the House minority leader, has told friends and family that he is an African-American.
According to reporter Marc Ambinder, Boehner arrived at this conclusion about his identity fairly recently. "It's taken me 63 years to be comfortable with this part of my life" said Boehner, who turns 61 in November. "The process has been something it's made me a happier and more deeply funky person. I have got to keep it real, no one is saying?"
An aide to Boehner quickly interrupted to tell the congressman the proper phrase is "Know what I'm saying?"
Many in Washington have long suspected that Boehner was hiding his racial identity behind a bizarre orange skin pigment. For years, Boehner's friends defended his Oompa-Loompa-esque coloration as the result of bad tanning but rumors persisted.
"It's a legitimate question and one I understand," said Boehner. "I really wish I had come to terms my racial identity earlier so I could have reached out to my fellow African-Americans the way that so many of my fellow Republicans have reached around to the gay community."
In order to try try and 'build a bridge to my brothers' Boehner said he still plans to fight to keep the Bush tax cuts for the very rich but will include a provision that would pardon Wesley Snipes for tax evasion. Boehner also indicated that after he builds the bridge, he plans to stay on the other side of it and to give the police permission to shoot anyone who attempts to cross it.
Reaction from conservatives was mixed. Popular radio quitter Laura Schlesinger said, "Boehner Boehner Boehner. Whenever I turn on CNN, all I hear is Boehner Boehner Boehner." Popular gubernatorial quitter Sarah Palin sent a tweet on Twitter, where she twittered "John Boehner joins ranks of my Grizzly Mama as a Black Bear Daddy. Hawt!" Unpopular human being who never seems to quit Alan Keyes accused Boehner of "stealing my essence." Asked to clarify, Keyes said he was referring to an issue of Essence magazine that Boehner borrowed in 2007.
Denzel Washington, the Academy award-winning star of such films as Malcolm X said of Boehner, "He's not black. Right? Come on. I don't know what he is, but the dudes not black. You can have him."