Somehow, two fringe candidates were included with Republican Gov. Butch Otter and challenger State Sen. Russ Fulcher during a televised debate ahead of next week’s GOP primary in Idaho. The results were magical.
Walt Bayes, who looks like an 1870’s gold miner and Harley Brown, who dresses like a biker, added some surreal insanity to the proceedings.
Later, the conversation turns to gay marriage; a federal judge earlier this week overturned Idaho’s ban. Brown, whose look and versatility could make him an attractive extra both for Sons of Anarchy and Game of Thrones, holds forth with an Oxford tie and what appears to be a sheath knife tucked into the black shirt beneath his motorcycle club’s leather kutte. He starts to talk some sense on gay marriage:
“Discrimination! Let me tell you about discrimination. In 1990- uh, belay that- in 1964, the blacks got the Civil Rights Act passed. We bikers! Discrimination? We are cop magnets, like a Playboy Bunny wearing’ a miniskirt gets hit on all the time! They pull us over without probable cause, and they bring up the sniffin’ dogs and they search us and our bikes, even when we’re not flyin’ our colors. If you’re a leather-clad Harley Davidson driver, you know, the cops are gonna zero in on you like a heat-seeking missile.
Okay. Discrimination. I used to drive taxis in Boise for 20 years. At night! And I’ve picked up my fair share of the gay community. And they have true love for one another. I’m tellin’ you, they love each other more than I love my motorcycle. And you know, they’re just as American as a Medal of Honor Winner. And, uh, liberty and justice for all! Equal protection under the law! I’m glad that judge made that decision, and I’m glad they wanna get married and live like that. I know I’m not really talkin’ like a Republican, but…
MODERATOR: Could we, uh, could we hear from Mr. Bayes?
BROWN: Sorry ma’am! I didn’t know what my time limit was! I didn’t see any of these lights goin’ on.
Bayes is up next with a response:
My response is, my main loyalty is to God almighty, and what he says is what I go by. And this is part of the Bible.
And then he reads a verse on Sodom and Gomorrah, like a trim Brimley leaning into his steaming Quaker Oats, so invigorated by the word of the Lord that his reading glasses are raptured to his forehead as he squints at the printed scripture.