People have been saying for awhile that current political rhetoric is beyond parody. The insane shit that politicians say with a straight face tends to leave comedy writers struggling to figure out how to even escalate the premise. But, thanks to a West Virginia man named Don Blankenship and his new attack ad on “Cocaine Mitch” McConnell, we’ve officially transcended from being beyond parody to being beyond comprehension.
The monotone, breathless delivery, the casual employment of phrases like “swamp captain” and “China family,” and the unexpected appearance of two unacknowledged blonde children all conspire to make the viewer feel like they’re truly going insane. Despite all evidence to the contrary, Blankenship is neither an alien creature nor a late-season Tim & Eric character. He is, in fact, a former coal company CEO who spent a year in prison “for conspiring to violate mine safety regulations.” Now, back on streets, he’s doing what any mentally stable human being would do—running for the U.S. Senate.
Keen-eyed viewers will probably notice that Blankenship is running for a seat in his home state of West Virginia, and that Senate Majority leader Mitch McConnell, who seems to be the main target of the ad, is from Kentucky. Also, they’re both Republicans. Still, that hasn’t stopped Blankenship from throwing xenophobic shade on the senator for months, focusing on his marriage to Secretary Of Transportation Elaine Chao and assumed financial ties to his father-in-law, whom Blankenship refers to as a “wealthy China person.”
In a follow-up statement explaining the ad (because all great campaign ads need explainers!), Blankenship said that his new nickname for McConnell, “Cocaine Mitch,” is a reference to a 2014 scandal in which 90 pounds of cocaine were found on a shipping vessel owned by McConnell’s father-in-law’s company. The fact that he thought anyone on Earth was going to make that connection on their own proves he’s living on a different plane of existence than the rest of us.
Blankenship’s campaign against the “swamp people” that call him “mentally ill” and take millions of dollars from “China people” will likely come to an end next week after the West Virginia primary on May 8th. According to a Fox News poll, he’s currently in third. But, with the majority of voters still undecided, this ad may be the thing that finally pushes him over the top. God help us all.
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