Are you having trouble stomaching the ongoing presidential campaign?

Maybe a little butter and sugar will help.

Ann Clark Ltd., a Rutland, Vermont, cookie-cutter company, recently released two new designs, in the shapes of Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump.

Gwen McShea, digital marketing director for Ann Clark, said a donkey and an elephant have been part of the company’s line of U.S.-made cookie cutters for several years, and sales always soar at election time.

“They’ve been doing tremendous for the last couple years,” she said.

During the summer, however, customers began asking for Clinton and Trump cutters, and the company decided to go ahead with production even though the cutters did not get to market until the beginning of September.

Sales have been good, McShea said, particularly because some companies selling them have made them part of a set of cutters that includes Trump, Clinton, a donkey, an elephant, a flag and a star.

“Yes, in general, people have really responded to it well,” McShea said, noting that customer feedback has been loaded with people’s political beliefs.

The cutters were designed by Georganne Bell, a Utah-based cookie decorator and author who operates the website Bell also decorated the cookies made with the cutters featured on Ann Clark’s website.

The most common observation from customers, McShea said, is that “Trump’s face is not orange enough.”

“That seems to be an overwhelming one,” she said.

Other one-liners from customers: “I couldn’t possibly stomach these two candidates,” “I could definitely bite the head off of these two” and my personal favorite: “Bake America great again.”

Until Trump’s recent sexual assault scandal, his cutter had been outselling Clinton 51 to 49 percent. Last week, however, Clinton took the lead, 50.5 to 49.5 percent, McShea said.

In general, though, the elephant outsells the donkey, McShea said, noting that Ann Clark cookie cutters sell better in red states than blue, with Utah customers buying the most.

A little closer to home, Republicans were ahead in the presidential cookie poll conducted at Mozart’s Bakery and Piano Cafe in the Clintonville, Ohio, neighborhood.

Mozart’s poll, based on sales of elephant and donkey cookies, has correctly predicted the outcome of the presidential race every year since 2000.

The day I checked in with owner Anand Saha, sales of elephant cookies were leading donkeys 726 to 721, “with a two-cookie margin of error.”
Why a margin of error?

“They could have crumbled,” Saha noted.

He said the final two weeks before the election is typically when most voting takes place.

Sales this year, though, definitely are down from years past, he said.

“At this point, I would have sold thousands of cookies in prior elections,” he said. “I have never seen the people so disillusioned or not happy with either candidate. They don’t even want the cookies.”

— Lisa Abraham writes about food for The Columbus (Ohio) Dispatch. Email her at or follow her on Twitter at @DispatchKitchen.