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'Let's go, Brandon': The right's new anti-Biden chant comes from a NASCAR broadcast where NBC Sports didn't want to drop an f-bomb

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NASCAR fans cheer with their arms in the air. One man, shirtless, holds a beer, while another appears to drink from the bill of an upside down duck.
NASCAR fans at Talladega Superspeedway in Talladega, Alabama. Sean Gardner/Getty Images
  • "Let's go, Brandon" has become a new chant on the right.

  • It's a tongue-in-cheek reference to a postrace NASCAR interview on NBC Sports.

  • Loud chants of "Fuck Joe Biden" came as the reporter referenced a cheer for the driver instead.

From comment threads to Fox News, "Let's go, Brandon" has been appearing as a dig against President Joe Biden since last weekend.

Without knowing the backstory, it may appear as though it's a chant for a charitable cause or another fleeting meme.

But the origin story of the right's tongue-in-cheek rallying cry is more complicated, and the narrative behind it has become oversimplified as 30-second clips saturate conservative media.

It all started on October 9, when NASCAR driver Brandon Brown won his first race in the league's Xfinity series at Alabama's legendary Talladega Superspeedway.

Kelli Stavast, an NBC Sports reporter, was interviewing an emotional Brown in the winner's circle. While these interviews are normally standard fare, the crowd made things a little more complicated: Chants of "Fuck Joe Biden" poured down from the stands.

In an apparent attempt at a lighthearted segue, Stavast referenced a much less audible chant than the Biden one: "Let's go, Brandon."

"Brandon, you also told me - as you can hear the chants from the crowd, 'Let's go, Brandon' - Brandon, you told me you were gonna kinda hang back those first two stages and just watch and learn," Stavast said. "What did you learn that helped you in those closing laps?"

The Federal Communications Commission has strict rules in place regarding the use of profanity on TV, putting Stavast in a difficult spot when it came to acknowledging the crowd's anti-Biden chant.

"Indecent and profane content are prohibited on broadcast TV and radio between 6 a.m. and 10 p.m., when there is a reasonable risk that children may be in the audience," the FCC's website said.

Letting an f-bomb or other swear words slip during broadcasts between those times can lead to costly fines.

Although Brown answered Stavast's question about his approach to the end of the race, that wasn't the biggest takeaway. And despite the track-side interview having nothing to do with politics, the reporter's attempt to move the interview along fed into long-standing assumptions of conservative media personalities that mainstream media outlets are always in cahoots with Democrats. They've since latched on to the chant as a prime example of bias against conservatives.

Ben Shapiro, the popular conservative podcast host and founder of the Daily Wire, captioned a Twitter screenshot on an article about the International Monetary Fund's assessment of inflation with the same chant.

"The chant is simply a hilarious recognition that a huge swath of the American people believe something the media simply are unable or unwilling to understand," he told Insider in an email. "It underscores both general opposition to Biden's policies and the large-scale contempt the right has for a media infrastructure that ignores them or willfully misinterprets them. It's a fantastic in-joke."

Donald Trump Jr. shared a meme featuring Biden and the Russian leader Vladimir Putin with his 5.2 million Instagram followers. "Name's Joe but my friends call me Brandon," it said.

"Inflation, shortages, mandates and illegals," tweeted Tomi Lahren, a Fox News contributor and Fox Nation streaming host. "Let's go Brandon!!!!"

Eventually, the chant ended up on a Fox News banner on Tuesday and at other professional sporting events. It also appeared on an airplane banner at a rally in Iowa for former President Donald Trump.

Stavast and representatives for NBC Sports, Trump Jr., and Lahren did not immediately respond to Insider's requests for comment.

Read the original article on Business Insider

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