A Brief Guide to Tonight's Glorious Ronald Reagan Presidential Debate

It's time for another Republican presidential debate tonight, like the fourth of 'em or something like that! And after tonight, you'll have to wait a whole five days for your next opportunity to watch them babble strange collective nonsense again. So what should we expect from tonight's gathering at the St. Ronald Reagan of Reagan Presidential Library in California? Here's the "insider's take."

  • If utterances of the word "Reagan" play a part in your drinking game, you will die tonight. Any debate at the Ronald Reagan presidential library that's worth its salt will feature every candidate namedropping Reagan as much as possible, usually in the form of "Ronald Reagan would support [my half-baked policy that Ronald Reagan actually has a lengthy record of opposing] because Ronald Reagan is Jesus and Yoda combined and he loves me." Do not be surprised if, say, Mitt Romney or whoever pays a gravedigger $50 and a half-pack of Luckies to exhume Reagan so he can carry the Gipper's corpse on piggyback for the duration. Reagan. Ronald Reagan. Ronald Reagan.
  • What kind of nasty tricks do those dainty MSNBC libs have up their sleeves? This will be the first NBC News debate of the year, to be aired on MSNBC. In the last debates, even the Fox News moderators have gotten an earful from the candidates about their supposedly dumb questions. It'll be a fine opportunity for any loser who's looking to score easy points by attacking the media (NEWT GINGRICH COMES TO MIND) to just ignore questions and say "I'm not answering your Gay Rachel Maddow Gotcha Questions, Brian Williams" instead, to a standing ovation.
  • Michele Bachmann might have to "try something," so hide the kids. Michele Bachmann's presidential candidacy has been rapidly fading since Rick Perry entered the race. She can't just stand there and get away with "looking presidential" anymore. She must either (a) attack, competently, or (b) do some dumb muppet trick. Expect her to claw out Rick Perry's eyeballs or jam an entire steak up her left nostril if she wants to "win."
  • Does Rick Perry even know how to debate? Rick Perry, whose state is currently burning to a fine crisp, has rarely debated in his 500 years as Texas governor. In last year's cycle, he didn't debate his general election opponent once! He seems like enough of a charismatic fellow to handle it, but he could also get really nervous and vomit on Mitt Romney. In fact that would probably seal him the nomination. How great would it be if Rick Perry vomited on Mitt Romney?
  • The Gawker Political Desk will be covering the debate live tonight starting at 8 p.m. Come and make comments and stuff!

    Ronald Reagan.

    [Image via AP]