According to an analysis by the University of Minnesota’s Dr. Eric Ostermeier, businessman Donald Trump is leading his Republican presidential primary opponents in terms of number of mentions on the TV quiz show Jeopardy! – and it isn’t even close.
Findings posted on the Ostermeier’s Smart Politics blog showed Trump as having a far larger footprint in the public’s pop cultural unconscious as measured by mentions on the trivia show, now in its 31st season.
“A search through the Jeopardy! Archive yielded 59 mentions of Trump on the program (29 as a Jeopardy! clue and 30 as an answer) – by far the most in the GOP field,” wrote Ostermeier.
For those of you keeping score at home –
“Jeb Bush is next with 23 mentions followed by George Pataki (15), Rick Perry (11), Chris Christie (9), Bobby Jindal (9), Rick Santorum (8), b (7), Lindsey Graham (6), Marco Rubio (4), Carly Fiorina (3), Ted Cruz (2), Rand Paul (2), and Scott Walker (2).
“The names of Ben Carson, Jim Gilmore, and John Kasich have not yet come up on the program.”
Jeb, besides coming in at No. 2 on the list, also emerges with another feather in his cap: he is the only Republican candidate to have been featured in a Final Jeopardy! clue or answer.
In 2003, then-Florida governor Bush’s name was the correct answer to this query, with the category 2001 NEWS: “On May 9, 2001 he signed a state law banning punch-card voting.”
Trump’s name was evoked on the show in a variety of colorful contexts mostly relating to his tenure as host of NBC’s The Apprentice, notable New York City real estate holdings, his hairstyle (called the “pompad-over” in one clue) and his former high-profile marriages.
“In 2000 Marla Maples auctioned off for $110,000 the engagement ring she got from this ex,” read one $200 clue from 2001.
The answer of course: Who is Donald Trump?
Marco Rubio, who came in at No. 9, was given more sober consideration by host Alex Trebek.
The name of Florida’s junior senator was the correct answer to the $200 clue in the category PEOPLE ARE READING…
““An American Son,” by this senator whose parents left Cuba in the 1950s,” read the clue.