White House responds to ‘Let’s Go Brandon’ chant designed to mock Biden

The chant began as a misheard cheer at a NASCAR race and took on a life of its own

Josh Marcus
San Francisco
Saturday 13 November 2021 13:42 EST
Rep. Boebert trolls AOC's Met Gala outfit, Dems with 'Let's Go, Brandon' dress

Joe Biden isn’t really paying attention to the latest political meme du jour, “Let’s go Brandon!” according to the White House.

The slogan, a euphemism for “F*** Joe Biden” in conservative circles that sprung from a misheard chant at an NASCAR race, has been growing in popularity since, but Mr Biden isn’t tapped into that one, press secretary Jen Psaki told reporters on Friday.

“I don’t think he spends much time focused on it or thinking about it,” she said in response to a question from Peter Alexander of NBC News

Instead, the press secretary went on, the president is focused on governing in a bipartisan way, as evidenced by the recent infrastructure bill, Ms Psaki said, calling for Republicans to show more civility.

“It takes two to move towards more civil engagement discourse, “she said. “The president is going to continue to operate from the promise he made early on. He wants to govern for all Americans. He’s going to deliver for all Americans, as is evidenced by the infrastructure bill that he’s going to sign on Monday that’s going to help expand broadband to everyone no matter what political party, no matter whether you voted for him or not.”

The meme began last month, when a crowd at a NASCAR event was chanting, “F*** Joe Biden,” which a sideline sports journalist misheard as, “Let’s go Brandon!”, believing the fans to be cheering for driver Brandon Brown, who had just won the race at Talladega Superspeedway.

Since then, the phrase has appeared in Donald Trump fundraising giveaways, on the mask of congressman Jeff Duncan of South Carolina, and reportedly over the PA system on a Southwest Airlines flight, prompting an investigation — its popularity then fuelling a set of parodies and riffs including a country-rap song and a Saturday Night Live sketch.

The trend is in keeping with the meme-ification of politics, particularly among diehard GOP supporters. The power of political memes has manifested itself in phenomena as varied as QAnon, a message-board fuelled conspiracy theory, to a video posted by congressman Paul Gosar of Arizona, which tweaked footage of the popular anime Attack on Titan to show him violently slaying progressive congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.

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