The Corner

The McCotter Freak Show

Representative Thaddeus McCotter has resigned from Congress, guaranteeing that he will win the 2012 award for strangest congressional career implosion.

Last year, the Michigan Republican launched a longshot bid for president. Someone had to finish last in the Iowa straw poll, and it was McCotter. So he returned to the life of a backbench congressman. Or so it seemed. A few weeks ago, he failed to gather enough signatures to appear on the August primary ballot. There were allegations of fraud. McCotter talked about running a write-in campaign, then dropped the idea. On Thursday, we learned from the Detroit News that he’s been trying to pitch a bizarre television show:

“Bumper Sticker: Made On Motown” starred McCotter hosting a crude variety show cast with characters bearing the nicknames of his congressional staffers, his brother and a drunk, perverted “Black Santa.” They take pot shots about McCotter’s ill-fated bid for the White House while spewing banter about drinking, sex, race, flatulence, puking and women’s anatomy. It features a cartoon intro and closing snippet with an Oldsmobile careening through Detroit and knocking over the city’s landmarks. The double-finned car has a Michigan license plate reading: “Made on MoTown.”

The News obtained a copy of the script from a former staffer who offered it as evidence of what the five-term congressman was pitching while in elected office and the tawdry humor unbecoming of a public official who had become disinterested in serving the 11th Congressional District.

If McCotter ever tries a return to public life, here’s a bumper-sticker idea for his foes: “McCotter: Not Welcome Back.”

John J. Miller, the national correspondent for National Review and host of its Great Books podcast, is the director of the Dow Journalism Program at Hillsdale College. He is the author of A Gift of Freedom: How the John M. Olin Foundation Changed America.


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