CPAC 2014 and the Chamber of Echoes

Weigel
Reporting on Politics and Policy.
March 8 2014 5:38 PM

CPAC 2014 and the Chamber of Echoes

NATIONAL HARBOR, Md.—It's actually quite difficult to be at CPAC and keep aware of how CPAC is being covered outside. Apparently Donald Trump's speech was worth wire stories, and Michele Bachmann's slap at Hillary Clinton went viral. Apparently, too, this video of a South Dakota state legislator is zooming around the left, provoking confusion.

"Mmm, mmm, mmm?" What does that mean? Why, it's a reference to this 2009 video of schoolchildren learning a song in which the name of Jesus Christ has been swapped out for the name of "Barack Hussein Obama." It got around because it was 1) creepy and 2) "mmm mmm mmm" sounded weird.

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A small event, but sort of demonstrative of how ideas can rocket back and forth within a movement and get no traction outside it. The world at large has forgotten that Barack Obama once referred to "57 states"—that was in 2008—but Grover Norquist mentioned that he had a few states left to visit "to get to 57," and it killed.

David Weigel is a reporter for Bloomberg Politics

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