With a name like T.clintonus rex, you'd expect to be safe from even the fiercest Paleolithic bullies, but it turns out that ancient, flying reptilian pundits have been snacking on Hillary, Bill and even young Chelsea Clinton with unbridled enthusiasm, possibly in an attempt to bring about their extinction.
A new study reveals that journalist reptiles, some of whom were born during the Age of Dinosaurs some 230 million to 65 million years ago, seldom catch prey in flight, but rather stalk them on land, in their private homes and on the campaign trail.
Until now, paleontologists pictured the so-called "winged media lizards" or the pterosuckasaurus as skim-feeders.
In this vision, the creatures would have flown over natural or relatively unbiased 'events' and grabbed up some basic information without looking too deeply into the facts in order to provide fodder for their 'news' shows and daily columns, much as Maury Povitch and Diane Sawyer do today.
The new findings, detailed this week online in the journal Roving Reptiles in their Natural Habitats, that pterosuckasaurs actually obtain most of their sustenance from attacks on land, often hiding in shadows for days awaiting a particularly juicy story or 'leak'.
Hundreds can be found flocking along the presidential campaign trail, with most favoring the dumpster leavings and miasma of innuendo that surround the Clinton campaign. Senators McCain and Obama appear to be considered secondary targets, though that may change as the season progresses.
Findings clearly indicate that the pterosuckasaurus is most dangerous when on the ground, rather than in flight, though airline restrictions on in-flight cell-phone use may be partially to blame.
"In our hypothesis, flight is primarily a locomotive method," said researcher Mark Mitten of the University of Frogsmouth in England.
"They're just using it to get from story A to story B. We think the majority of their lives, when they're feeding and reproducing and writing libelous 'news' reports, that's all being done on the ground rather than in the air."
Like their brains, the wings of the pterosuckasaurus are seldom put to best use.
"All the details of their anatomy, and the environment their fossils are found in, show that then, as now, they made their living by walking around, making payoffs to weasels, snapping unwelcome 'candid' photos and picking up gossip and misinformation from dubious, shadowy, mac-wearing characters," Mitten said.
Their brain cavity is universally found to be small.
"Whatever these reptiles were and are doing, we can definitely rule out any significant cognitive activity," Mitten said.