After Gov. Rauner’s chocolate milk incident, a handy guide to beverage politics


News item: At a public event in Chicago, Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner, who is seeking re-election, drinks chocolate milk to show his embrace of diversity.

A guide to American beverages and what they signify when employed as political metaphors:

Black coffee: You’re a tough son of a gun, although possibly sympathetic to the concerns of bean pickers in distant countries. You would like a breath mint.

Coca-Cola: Man of the people, but may require significant time off for dental work.

Diet Coke: Probably wearing Spanx.

Pabst Blue Ribbon: You’ll stick to a budget while telling voters that you’re not doing so because it’s cheaper but because you genuinely prefer the cheaper option. Also, you may grow an unruly beard while in office.

La Croix: “Dry January” has taken over your life. But at least you no longer have the shakes.

Sarsaparilla: You are the only person in this race who was born in the 19th century.

Mtn Dew: Going all-in on the possibility that, this election, young people will turn out at the polls.

1 percent milk: Not afraid of being associated with the considerable wealth you have accumulated. And probably wearing Spanx.

2 percent milk: Man of the people.

Whole milk: Your self-hatred knows no bounds.

IPA: Something of a sensualist, although you have trouble making up your mind.

Kool-Aid: Follower.

Red Bull: Taste buds were burned off years ago in a horrific hot pizza incident.

1961 Chateau La Fleur Petrus: You have absolutely no desire to win the election. In it for the campaign donations.

Tea: Thatcherite.

Tea with milk: Spent junior year abroad in London, still waving it in people’s faces. “Jolly good” remains in your vocabulary.

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Limeade: People just don’t understand the nightmare that is chronic scurvy.

Vernor’s: Michigander; may not meet your state’s eligibility requirements.

Scotch and soda: Easy target for lobbyists.

sajohnson@chicagotribune.com

Twitter: @StevenKJohnson

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