I think it’s probably an old maxim when it comes to elections: Try not to do anything cringy that will hurt your campaign.
We’ve seen people do it in the past. Infamously, there have been things like the Howard Dean scream and Michael Dukakis wearing that helmet in the tank. They were doing well, and then they did themselves in, imploding their campaigns immediately.
— LV in OC (@LVinLA) August 12, 2023
Same Vibe pic.twitter.com/Q2hmRRAS8b
— Richard A (@rickyrakka) August 13, 2023
Don’t put on any weird hats, don’t eat anything funny, and for sure, do not try to dance.
But I think Vivek Ramaswamy might not have gotten the memo on all that. He’s kind of showed he’s not a conformist anyway.
The 38-year-old went out on a limb and showed his age at the Iowa State Fair. He performed Eminem’s “Lose Yourself” after he did an interview with Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds.
He said it was his favorite walk-out music at events because it was “young and scrappy.”
“I am really starting to understand my age,” responded Reynolds, 64. “I’m going to have to go look that up.”
His performance is burning up the internet. It has almost seven million views, and everyone has an opinion about it.
a bit longer video here (blame bad state fair phone service for the bad upload quality) https://t.co/WB0WJd50uB
— Dylan Wells (@dylanewells) August 12, 2023
Vivek Ramaswamy raps. Based or cringe? pic.twitter.com/lHlp5qSPck
— Ian Miles Cheong (@stillgray) August 12, 2023
He was certainly enjoying himself, although I’m not sure how it went over with the Iowa State Fair crowd. It was met by cheers, although one lady in that last video seemed like she was trying to figure it all out. Some found it refreshing and relatable; many others on X was that it was cringy. But it certainly drew a sharp distinction between himself and the older candidates who probably aren’t even familiar with the song. Still others pointed out that it was an Eminem song and that Eminem was not exactly a conservative and would probably try to go after him for using it.
Ramaswamy previously revealed on Fox that he rapped while he was in college and law school, going by “Da Vek.” “I was a little bit of a libertarian freestyler in college and had some fun with it,” he said.
“My name’s Vivek/It rhymes with cake/It is about thee/The United States is about lib-er-tee/So ‘Fox & Friends’ join us on the trail/We’ll have some fun/I’ll see you at the trail,” Ramaswamy said to co-host Steve Doocy at the end of his interview on Fox.
Ramaswamy had been moving up in the polls and generally has been third among the Republican candidates. Talking about policy and things like rebuking the latest Trump indictment I think have helped him. People want someone who’s going to stand up to the powers that be and set things right. Comments about being open to a pardon for the Bidens aren’t going to go over well and won’t help with the base. Rapping probably isn’t going to do it for him and break him out of the pack, although it certainly does have people talking.