The big story out of Minnesota these days is a billboard on Interstate Highway 35 in or near Wyoming, which is a little north of the Twin Cities metropolitan area. Highway 35 is the main North-South artery in this area, going north to Duluth and south to Des Moines. It was the Highway 35 W bridge across the Mississippi which collapsed, you may recall, a couple of years ago.
Here is the billboard:
NPR confirms that the billboard is real and not “an internet trick.” Beyond that, NPR seems baffled:
At first glance, it would seem to be from some person or group who isn’t thrilled by President Barack Obama’s performance so far — unless it’s a more ironic message from those who didn’t think too much of Bush and want to remind voters about him.
Actually, that question and the accompanying photo have been common among some Republicans for a while now. There is no reason to believe the billboard is intended as an “ironic message.” It will be interesting to find out who paid for the billboard; if it’s someone local, in all likelihood we know him. In any event, the sentiment is one that is more widely shared by Americans every day.
UPDATE: The Minneapolis Star Tribune reports that the billboard was paid for by a group of small business owners:
“It was put up by a group of small business owners — who want to stay anonymous –because they felt Washington wasn’t listening,” said Mary McNamara, a spokeswoman for the company that owns the billboard. “They felt like it was a good way to get their message out.”