Town Hall Season: Birtherism, Food Stamp Fraud, and Crazy Cat Ladies

It’s Town Hall Season and that means more amazing and crazy things are happening at Republican town halls.

Representative Markwayne Mullin (R-OK) attended two separate town halls yesterday and managed to say something incriminating both times.

If you can watch this without cringing so hard your toes curl, I salute you. The fireworks begin almost immediately as a crazy cat lady approaches Mullin to present him with some form of evidence that President Obama is indeed a secret Kenyan. via ThinkProgress

CRAZY CAT LADY: My question is what do you know about Obama’s identification fraud?

MULLIN: Let me just stop you right there. You’re talking about the birth certificate? We lost that argument November 6th. We had four years to get that proven. We didn’t. We reelected him. So that’s a dead issue.

CRAZY CAT LADY: No it isn’t, because I have something here for you and I’m going to bring this [inaudable]… This is 71 page affidavit from Mike Zullo who is a detective of Sheriff Arpaio’s Cold Case Posse.

MULLIN: I’m not defending this guy. But have you ever seen those Christians that are on the street corners that are screaming scripture at at cars as they drive by? I believe they’ve got great intentions. I believe, honestly, they they’re Christian individuals. But let me ask you something, are they doing any good? I believe what you’re saying and I don’t support this president whatsoever.

CRAZY CAT LADY: But he’s not a real president.

MULLIN: But ma’am, we lost November 6th. We had the opportunity to get another president in there. And like it or not…

CRAZY CAT LADY: He’s not gonna be held accountable for a crime that goes to the very root of what he’s doing to this constitution. He was a fraud, he got in [inaudable) ... he's above the law.

MULLIN: We had four years to take care of that. Our country’s facing some serious issues. If the rest of the American people thought that was a big enough issue which, I thought it probably would’ve been. Who would've thought we would ever actually be questioning if we had a natural-born president being president? Who would’ve ever thought that we’d actually be there? [...] So when I say we lost the argument, we lost that argument. Now let’s move on to some other issues. I believe it’s still there, but my God if we didn’t prove it the first four years, what do you think the chances are now?

Did you make it through that? I barely did.

Mullin was clearly horrified and bewildered by this woman, and I understand because I was horrified just watching this video, but as a United States Representative he has to do better than agreeing while being dismissive.

Meanwhile, during another town hall, Mullin recalled an anecdote about witnessing people who are physically fit paying for food with food stamps. Because if you don’t look like a stereotypical poor person, you’re probably committing fraud. Or something.

So I’m in Crystal City and I’m buying my groceries…and I noticed everybody was giving that card. They had these huge baskets, and I realized it was the first of the month. But then I’m looking over, and there’s a couple beside me. This guy was built like a brick house. I mean he had muscles all over him. He was in a little tank top and pair of shorts and really nice Nike shoes. And she was standing there, and she was all in shape and she looked like she had just come from a fitness program. She was in the spandex, and you know, they were both physically fit. And they go up in front of me and they pay with that card. Fraud. Absolute 100% all it is is fraud…it’s all over the place. And there you go, to the fact that we shouldn’t be supporting those who won’t work. They’re spending their money someplace.

Just as I was when Representative Louie Gohmert claimed he saw people buying King Crab legs with food stamps, I am skeptical that Mullin has ever actually witnessed someone paying for food with food stamps, let alone muscle-bound ‘brick houses.’ But even if that were the case, being physically fit (or unfit) does not preclude you from participating in the SNAP program. You either meet the eligibility requires or you don’t. Physical appearance has nothing to do with it.

But let’s be real — physical appearance clearly does have something to do with it as far as Republicans are concerned, especially if you’re a person of color.

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  • Grant Beaudette

    I’m sorry. I sure this is an informative, well-written post, but my brain can’t process anything past the fact that the US has a Congressman named Markwayne.

    • blackdaug

      They can’t all be Joebob’s…

  • blackdaug

    The problem is, crazy cat lady has crazy cat husband. Together, they have crazy cat sons and live in Crazy Cat Town, county seat of Crazy Cat County..in Crazy Cat State.
    ……and they all believe the same crazy cat shit.
    My hair turned gray just watching this President make it through the last election cycle, traveling through crazy cat land.
    Where they make a religion out of not only questioning his legitimacy to hold office, but his legitimacy as a human.
    Those people holding up those signs outside his speech in Arizona are everywhere.
    He needs to press his agenda somewhere outside of Crazy Cat Land.

    • Draxiar

      And it’s all a crazy catastrophe!

      • blackdaug

        I just keep seeing the Simpsons cat lady…actually covered in cats, babbling and throwing them at passers by.
        Babble…babble……”birth certificate”!….babble…babble…”sheriff Joe!”….throws cat..

  • SEPA_Q

    Why are they always “crazy cat ladies”? Why not “crazy dog guys” or “crazy parakeet people”??? I realize that this was an actual woman (can’t watch the video) but, as a cat-person, I resent the connection! /complaints and back to your usual banter

  • GOVCHRIS1988

    Markwayne? They named him MARKWAYNE!? A guy named Markwayne thinks the President wasn’t born here. Well, surrrrrrrrrrrprise surprise surprise. Seriously, people question black people giving jacked up names, but MARK WAYNE!?

  • muselet

    Markwayne Mullin wasn’t horrified and bewildered by the lunatic birfer at that town hall. He was horrified and bewildered by the American people, who twice elected a dusky fellow—who can’t really be an American because just look at him!—to be president.

    “And they go up in front of me and pay with that card.”

    As I said when Louie Gohmert was whingeing about king crab legs, there are more than a few people near me who receive SNAP benefits and I have never knowingly seen anyone use an EBT card to buy food. Why? Because the cards are designed to look and work like debit cards, precisely to keep nosey parkers from knowing who is getting food assistance. The only way Mullin could know the couple was paying with an EBT card would be if he hung over their shoulders to get a good look.

    Maybe he did and that fit couple didn’t adminster a (justifiable) beat-down. Maybe he doesn’t understand what a debit card is. Maybe he’s simply a cruel little man who lies. Me, I’m guessing the truth is equal parts (2) and (3).

    If it’s (1), I’m actually disappointed.

    –alopecia

  • trgahan

    Spent summer in rural OK and I lost count of the number average white American paying for their food with an EBT card, so…..if they clear up the “fraud” by ending food stamps, rural OK is going to be awfully hungry!

  • Steven

    I am beyond exhausted with these proudly ignorant, borderline insane, racist know-nothings who have somehow, despite the most obvious mental limitations imaginable, managed to gain control of one of the only two political parties in this country. Truly, it’s so absurd as to be almost unimaginable. This woman, who is clearly delusional and likely suffers from other clinical psychiatric maladies, is the perfect example of the mindset that drives all Republican policies today: it’s doesn’t matter if it’s true; it doesn’t matter if you lack even scintilla of evidence – all that matters is that you stand up, stick your chin in the air, and say, “I hate that nigger in the White House.” That sums up the entire Republican position since November 2008.

    I think we need to look at a reverse-southern strategy here. Just as Nixon tied the Democratic party to the minorities in this country and then exploited racial animosity to crate an electoral majority – well, we need to do the same. Let’s start making these crazy Tea Party devotees the sole face of the Republican party. Make every Republican own every insane, unhinged utterance. Dare them to stand up and say, “No, I don’t believe the President was born in another country.” We need a strong voice in this rep’s district to confront him at the next town hall meeting and ask him, point blank, if he believes that President Obama is illegally serving his office. Then, we he hems and haws and declines to give a straight answer, quote to him his own words. It can be done. The crazy can be confronted and talked down. I’m a liberal in a small town in Georgia. I do it every damn day. It’s exhausting, but I do it.

  • Bob

    I hear these anecdotes from my conservative friends about people paying for food with foodstamp cards, but their kids are wearing brand names. I can think of many reasons why this may be: The Goodwill, Thrift Stores, places like TJ Maxx, maybe these were bought prior to need food stamps, maybe they saved up to buy a few nice outfits for their kids so they don’t appear poor, etc. I swear these people need to see you dressed up like the cast of Oliver or Annie with rags and hats in hand before they can accept that someone needs assistance with their bills.

    • http://www.aquariusmoon.info CarolDuhart

      We haven’t even gotten to the knockoffs that look like brand names but aren’t, or consignment shops, or those discount stores that sell late-season merchandise. Also being physically fit doesn’t keep you from working 2 parttime jobs. And let’s not even think about the folks who are buying for an elderly relative who’s having a hard time getting around.

    • D_C_Wilson

      Reagan used to loved the anecdote about a man who used food stamps (back when they were actual stamps) to buy an orange and then used the change to buy a bottle of booze. No one ever asked him to substantiate that story or even ask him where he originally heard it, but it was accepted as fact on the right.

      Not much has changed, except that the technology now prevents people from getting change from SNAP. So the wingnuts have to come up with more creative stories.

  • D_C_Wilson

    I don’t believe in God, but now I’m praying Ted Cruz runs for president in 2016. I so can’t wait to hear all the excuses why he’s a natural born citizen and Obama is not.

  • Clusterpuck

    What is it with these people and their fixation with shoes?

  • mrbrink

    So, I guess we’re all supposed stand strong against people getting food. These fucking people are sick, sick, sick.

  • FlipYrWhig

    Usually in The Legend Of The Welfare, the person on welfare is buying candy or booze or something else unhealthy and sinful. Now in this variant the person on welfare is _too_ healthy. “I’m sick of all my hard earned money going to support healthy unhealthy fat skinny lazy active people! Also, I’m on disability, but it’s not like Those People who just want a handout!”

  • rickmassimo

    It’s evidently beyond Markwayne’s capacities to imagine that maybe these people had jobs until a few weeks/months ago, but now they’re on food stamps.

    I’m sure it’ll occur to him next week when he’s making his “Obama hasn’t created enough jobs” speech. And he will never link the two and realize that one of his two major talking points (“there are no jobs out there”/”people are too lazy to work”) can’t be true.

  • Badgerite

    They focus on a birth certificate but has it ever occurred to them that in order for Barack Obama to have been born in Kenya his mother would actually have to have traveled there ever in her life. Their are passport records, after all, yet they have never produced or even asked for any records relating to ANY foreign excursions by his very young mother prior to his birth. One of the things that the GOP did the first time the Bill Clinton was running for president was to try to get his passport records. They made a big deal out of a student trip to Russia and tried to get their hands on his mothers records as well. This turned into a minor campaign flap. Ann Stanley Dunham was very young when she gave birth to her first child. Exactly why, when her husband was living in Hawaii and attending school there would she decide to travel to Kenya, a country that at that time certainly could not have had a very advanced medical system, to have her FIRST child. That sort of flies in the face of what we know about human behavior not to mention any pertinent records.