Public Embraces Bill Maher’s #FlipaDistrict Campaign
Posted at 2:03 p.m. on Feb. 13, 2014
Comedian Bill Maher is considering all options before determining which House lawmaker he’ll try to unseat later this fall.
If the torrent of #flipadistrict nominees that irate constituents have splashed across social media are any indication, Maher should have no shortage of targets to choose from.
Maher provided an update about the fledgling campaign on his show “Real Time,” stressing that his team is still very much in the research phase.
“We are looking to find one really bad congressman out there. And, apparently, from the reaction we got last week, there are a lot of them … really gerrymandered lamos who people want to get rid of,” Maher told his HBO viewers. He urged people to nominate “someone who represents you who you think is a lemon, … someone who is just a useless waste of space.”
Per Maher, the plan is to cast as wide a net as possible and then pare down the field via a March Madness-style bracket.
“We are not close to deciding who is going to be the guy,” he warned, adding that the selection phase will probably extend until the end of April.
“We will pick one, we will spend this whole year periodically going to that district and talking about this congressman and see if we can get some change affected in America,” Maher said recently on the show.
“Real Time” executive producer Scott Carter shared some additional intel about the interactive project with Lost Remote:
LR: ‘Real Time’ has always been known to push the boundaries of political discourse. Are there concerns that Flip a District might go too far?
Carter: The prime directive of Flip A District will be: first, do no harm. We aim to be a balm in Gilead, not a fly in the ointment. We think that our involvement will help to counter-balance the excesses arising from the Citizens United decision.
LR: Why give people the opportunity to vote on which district to flip versus Bill choosing the district himself?
Carter: There are 435 districts. Most have incumbents running for re-election. We think our fans can help us narrow down the field of villains, hucksters and boobs. But, in the end, the choice will be Bill’s.
Fed-up political observers have begun lobbying in earnest, tossing out names and complaints (the grievances are legion) designed to ensure that Maher trains his rat-a-tat barbs at their representative from now until November. (They also are posting on his website.)
One determined tweeter bombarded the #flipadistrict feed for nearly an hour with gripes about Rep. Mike Coffman, R-Colo.:
He isn’t the only one catching hell.
Rep Leonard Lance, R-N.J.:
Rep. Sean P. Duffy, R-Wis.:
Rep. Blake Farenthold, R-Texas:
Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, R-Fla.:
Rep, Keith Rothfus, R-Pa.:
Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif.:
Rep. Kerry Bentivolio, R-Mich.:
Rep. Ted Yoho, R-Fla.:
Rep. Lee Terry, R-Neb.:
Whole House GOP leadership:
And the entire Alabama delegation:
Meanwhile, at least one guy seems worried Maher is only handing tea partyers a rousing new battle cry: