Arthur took up exactly where Garfield had left off, laying in bed and moaning. When the nation demanded more from its president, he promptly went into a coma, saying, “It’s what Garfield would have wanted.” Critics complained that people in comas don’t speak, and his popularity plummeted.
Determined to stay in bed for his entire presidency, he next pretended to have measles. But it was quickly pointed out that his “measles” were merely painted on, and that measles were red, not black. He claimed he’d been delirious from fever when he painted them on, but to no avail: the public turned on him and he soon lost the next election, despite his catchy slogan, “Chester Arthur: Could Someone Please Change My Bedpan?”