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Vermont GOP chair to hold ‘Let’s Go, Brandon’ Rally

Published: Nov. 9, 2021 at 11:26 PM EST
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BURLINGTON, Vt. (WCAX) - “Let’s go, Brandon” is a phrase growing in popularity in recent months among Republicans nationwide. Now, Vermont’s recently elected GOP chair, Paul Dame, says he is attempting to make it something more positive by holding a rally in his hometown of Brandon.

The meme was born after fans at a NASCAR event were chanting explicit language about President Biden. A commentator reiterated it as “Let’s go, Brandon” during a broadcast, referencing the driver Brandon Brown. But the tagline has been called divisive by some, including other members of Vermont’s GOP.

In a YouTube video, Dame said his goal for Saturday’s rally is for people to stop focusing on the past. Others, including Republican Gov. Phil Scott, said this may not be the best way to go about it. Dame says the “Let’s go, Brandon” tagline goes beyond dissatisfaction with President Biden. “It taps into the fact people don’t feel like they’re being glossed over and lost, especially in political consideration,” Dame said.

Middlebury College Political Science Professor Bert Johnson says once Saturday’s event has passed, people could forget all about it or it could damage the GOP. “As party chair, your goal is to do a good job of recruitment and fundraising,” Johnson explained. “I suppose this could raise a little bit of money, but it could make people a little skeptical of the party.”

Republican Gov. Scott shared his own thoughts on the event Tuesday afternoon. “It’s lighthearted but I take it somewhat personally -- if you take it literally,” Scott said. “I just don’t think it’s necessary at this point in time.”

Dame said the GOP has been too caught up in being bitter about things already passed. “We’ve got to make sure we can leave behind the past. That’s what I’m hoping, this event is a pivot,” Dame explained. “If you’ve been frustrated or angry about national politics, leave it behind. Let’s move forward to something more positive.”

If you don’t like the idea, Dame said you don’t have to come. “You can hold a counter rally the next weekend or do something bigger and better in a different place,” Dame said. “It’s a free country and your right to do so.”

Dame was elected GOP chair three days ago. Former chair, Deb Billado, who held the position since 2017 opted not to run.

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