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The NRSC has been forced to pull an ad from the airwaves and Internets featuring a few hicks at a local diner talking about the Senate race in West Virginia. Normally nobody in Washington or West Virginia would think twice about this, because West Virginia is full of hicks, and everyone knows that. But Democrats found the casting call for this ad, which was shot in a Philadelphia diner with Pennsylvania actors. And it is apparently an insult when you actually list the way stereotypical West Virginia hicks look. You know, “Trucker hats (not brand new, preferably beat up).”

Here’s the casting call:

– We are going for a ‘Hicky’ Blue Collar look. These characters are from West Virginia so think coal miner/trucker looks

– Each character should bring a several options and stay away from all black or all white or thin stripes (thicker stripes and plaid are good)

– Clothing Suggestions:
• Jeans
• Work boots
• Flannel shirt
• Denim shirt
• Dickie’s type jacket with t-shirt underneath
• Down filled vest
• John Deer hats (not brand new, preferably beat up)
• Trucker hats (not brand new, preferably beat up)
• No Thin Stripes


Yeah, that is probably sort of offensive if you are a normal person who happens to live in West Virginia and owns a shirt or two with “thin stripes.” And your afternoon editor will disagree with Dave Weigel on this, who said Republicans should have probably found some actual West Virginia hicks for this ad, and would have done so quite easily. Sure, you could have done that. But any hick you round up probably wouldn’t be very telegenic and would have trouble saying the lines without saying something racist about Obama.

Of course, the NRSC could have just covered the Republican candidate, rich business guy John Raese, in coal dust and thrown a coonskin cap on him. Same thing, right? “I will work together with Jay Rockefeller in the Senate to ensure there is a muskrat in every pot. That’s my promise to you, sealed by me shooting this shotgun in the air and jumping around.” [Salon]

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