Run Forest Run

North Carolina’s lieutenant governor is a far-right (and I’m really struggling here with my nouns, because all the descriptive ones I can think of are obscenities, so I guess I’m gonna go nondescriptive) gentleman by the name of Dan Forest. He’s pretty theocratic, pretty attuned to ALEC, pretty awful. And he’s running for the Republican candidate for governor.

I hadn’t seen any ads or signs for him, but I was in Raleigh this weekend. And along the highway I saw several sets of vaguely Burmashave-style signs: “RUN FOREST RUN!” they declared, one word per sign, before a more traditional campaign sign.

Now, I’m aware that my pinko liberal elitist union thug social justice warrior self isn’t exactly the target demographic for these ads. And I have never actually seen all of Forest Gump, just snippets and scenes here and there.

But I have to say, this seems like an odd campaign choice to me. My understanding of Forest Gump is–well, that he’s not the person you want for your state’s governor. It’s not a kindly comparison. Despite that, in digging around for other campaign materials for him, I’m seeing this hashtag being used–and not just recently, but as early as spring 2019 (and possibly earlier).

Is this just a welcome breath of self-effacing humor, something I thought conservatives had forgotten about? Is this a tweak at liberal elitists like me? Or is there something else going on here?

I think it’s as simple as they’ve heard that phrase, and don’t care about the context.

Sort of like Reagan using “Born in the USA” as a campaign song.

Its a memorable line, thats probably about it.

I kind of worry that this is the direction of the GOP now. Just more and more into theocratic authoritarianism. I mean it worked for Trump, so maybe people like Tom Cotton and Forest are the future of the party.

Also why is the lt governor a republican if the governor is a democrat?

They’re elected separately in our state. Which is, by my count, the 738th dumbest thing about our state government.

Didn’t California have the same thing? I think when Pete Wilson was running for President he had a Democratic Lieutenant Governor who got up to some monkey business when Wilson was out of the state.

I wouldn’t want to use Forrest Gump as a campaign model but I assume most people don’t really remember the movie, just the box of chocolates line and Run Forrest Run.

It might be a combination of the line from Forrest Gump and Burma Shave.

You noticed it, did you not? That’s all a sign needs to do.


I mean, I noticed on the radio yesterday that Chipotle’s is having some other lawsuit about food poisoning in its meals. I don’t buy the “any publicity is good publicity” argument, not least because that argument is chiefly put forth by people who make their living generating publicity.

The sign made me think, Huh, Forest is an intellectually challenged incompetent dude who got into a position of importance through sheer dumb luck, yet people don’t realize that and are cheering him on. I noticed it, but the way I noticed it really tests the “any publicity is good publicity” trope.

I think I want to get one of those bumper stickers—- for the FRONT bumper of my car.


ETA: They’ve got a map at the link, showing which states fall in which categories.
More ETA: Separate elections seems to be mostly a Southern thing, and also a far-western thing. Weird combination.

His mother is a nutjob Amway person who was mayor of Charlotte and was in Congress for 9 terms

I’ll go there. There is a vast swath of the Republican base that doesn’t trust nor like candidates of above average intelligence or education. Smart = elitist. Forest Gump is a great role model for them; an honored veteran, accomplished athlete, a wildly successful entrepreneur - yet not smart enough to be up to no good.

I support making “Stupid is as stupid does” the official slogan of the GOP.

You had to go to Raleigh to see those signs? They’re all over Henderson County. There’s one (4?) right down the street from my house. There’s a bunch of them in Asheville too, which I don’t get. Not really a conservative stronghold there.

Now someone has put these up on my commute. Obviously it’s illegal to remove any candidate’s sign. But I’m wondering idly about the legality of printing new sign with the same font and red background that read “AWAY” and interspering them so that the signs read


He’s used that same schtick in his previous two elections, so it’s not a new thing.

The only shenanigans I remember in California were by Republican Lieutenant Governor Mike Curb under Jerry Brown’s 1978-82 term as Governor. Brown was running for President in 1980, but he didn’t have the numbers he did in 1976.

For a second I thought this was some kind of *Macbeth *thread.