Sarah Huckabee Sanders Uses a Jay-Z Sample in Hype Video to Defend $19,000 Podium

Barf Bag: I have secondhand embarrassment from watching this clip posted by the Governor of Arkansas.

Sarah Huckabee Sanders Uses a Jay-Z Sample in Hype Video to Defend $19,000 Podium

Welcome back to Barf Bag. 

You might think that being a political nepo baby would bestow the tiniest amount of humility, but former Trump press secretary and current Arkansas Gov. Sarah Huckabee Sanders (R) appears to have zero shame. Sanders, the daughter of former Gov. Mike Huckabee, chose to respond to an audit about her office spending more than $19,000 on a lectern with an incredibly stupid video.

This objectively ugly podium—a custom “Falcon-style” lectern with an hourglass base and blue trim—has been causing Sanders headaches for months. An Arkansas blogger and attorney was digging into public records on her spending and found a $19,029.25 payment to Beckett Events, a Virginia-based company founded by a GOP lobbyist and consultant. After the blogger sued the state for alleged violations of the state’s Freedom of Information Act, Sanders proposed a special session to add new restrictions to the FOIA laws. Hmm!

The blogger eventually got documents showing that the payment was for a lectern. The Republican Party of Arkansas reimbursed the state for it—but emails show it only did this after the blogger filed the records request. The state legislature ordered an audit of this whole situation and that took several months, which brings us to Monday. The audit said Sanders’ office may have violated state laws by shredding a document that should have been preserved.

After the 68-page audit was released, Sanders posted this video on Twitter, with the text, “My thoughts on the podium…” It shows a simple lectern with the state seal going poof into the gauche podium at the center of the inquiry. There are close-ups, animation, and smoke??? Unfortunately, you need to have the sound on in order to appreciate just how embarrassing it is.

Yes, she used a Jay-Z sample from “Public Service Announcement” to make it even more cringe: “allow me to reintroduce myself / my name is….po-dium.” As the Washington Post notes, the video “ends with the silhouette of a lectern atop the words ‘COME AND TAKE IT.’” That’s a phrase famously used by Second Amendment freaks. And if I were one of those, I’d be annoyed that my Big Bad slogan was being used for an overpriced hunk of wood meant for speeches. 

Somehow, this isn’t even the first over-produced video Sanders has released while serving as Governor. In April 2023, she tried to dunk on Bud Light for partnering with trans TikToker Dylan Mulvaney. The video is a parody ad for anti-woke beer koozies and, as my colleague Kady Ruth Ashcraft wrote at the time, the clip felt way too close to a Saturday Night Live skit making fun of people like Sanders.

Now I’m left wondering if Sanders wanted to be a stand-up comedian but got pushed into the family business instead. She loves the spotlight!

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  • A dismissed juror in Trump‘s hush-money case said he looks more yellow than orange, actually. [Twitter]
  • Colorado Republicans blocked an amendment that would have removed the statute of limitations for child sexual abuse cases. [Denver Post]
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This has been your weekly Barf Bag, thanks for reading!

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