I’m not saying our politics are weird, but that’s a conclusion one might easily draw from, among other things, this report that Sen. Mitch McConnell’s re-election campaign is selling “Cocaine Mitch” T-shirts. The T-shirts feature a faceless illustration of the Senate Majority Leader on the front alongside the image of a fine white powdery substance. The back of the shirt reads: “Team Mitch Cartel Member.”
The reference is to the “anti-establishment” campaign of West Virginia’s Don Blankenship, who ran for the Senate in 2018. Blankenship called McConnell “Cocaine Mitch,” based on reports that drugs were found aboard a cargo ship owned by the family of the Majority Leader’s wife, Elaine Chao.
NBC News says the T-shirts are “hot-sellers.” Thus, the McConnell campaign appears to be capitalizing on Blankenship’s ludicrous slur.
The T-shirt has drawn criticism. In response, McConnell’s campaign says, “If we sell enough #CocaineMitch shirts, we’ll buy you a sense of humor.”
The campaign can buy me one too. I think the T-shirts are in bad taste. The Senate Majority Leader should not be joking publicly in any context about cocaine, which is responsible for dozens of deaths in Kentucky each year.