‘What the Hell Am I Watching’: Republicans Torch Their Own SOTU Rebuttal


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The ritual surrounding the annual State of the Union is never complete until the president’s opposition has presented its rebuttal — occasionally in an embarrassing manner.

Katie Britt, the junior Republican senator from Alabama, delivered the GOP’s rebuttal to President Joe Biden’s address on Thursday. Her impassioned, breathless speech — delivered at times in an ASMR-esque whisper from what appeared to be her kitchen — ended up feeling more like a rejected audition tape for a supporting role on “Grey’s Anatomy” than the hard-hitting political sparring favored by Biden’s Republican critics.

Into the late hours of the night, Rolling Stone was inundated, sometimes completely unprompted, with messages from longtime GOP operatives, right-leaning pollsters, conservative Capitol Hill staff, MAGA lawyers, and even some senior members of Trump’s own 2024 campaign absolutely torching Britt’s absurdly over-dramatic rebuttal.

“What the hell am I watching right now?” a Trump adviser asked, mid-Britt remarks.

“Creepy,” one of the Republican pollsters noted.

A lawyer working in the Trump orbit says the performance reminded them of public-access television, and a senior House congressional aide remarks that it was “cringe”-inducing to watch and likely destined to be turned into a “lame [Saturday Night Live] skit” this weekend.

“I’ll give Biden this — he at least gave a better speech than Katie Britt,” one national Republican consultant said bluntly.

Online, the reaction from conservative commentators was similar.

“I’m sure Katie Britt is a sweet mom and person, but this speech is not what we need,” TPUSA Founder Charlie Kirk wrote on X, formerly Twitter. “Joe Biden just declared war on the American right and Katie Britt is talking like she’s hosting a cooking show whispering about how Democrats ‘dont get it.’”

Podcast host Allie Beth Stuckey pleaded “never again” to her fellow Republicans: “I know y’all were going for the relatable mom speaking in her kitchen from her heart, but it didn’t work. Just a straight, strong speech will do in the future. Thanks.”

Radio host Jesse Kelly wrote that Britt’s rebuttal was not what he’d “prefer out of the GOP response, but there’s no question Katie Britt has mastered the ultimate weapon of dimes everywhere; the fake cry. That’s a seasoned pro right there.”

Across Capitol Hill, the rebuttal was received with widespread mockery. One Republican staffer described it to Business Insider as “giving high school freshman speech.”

“She really thinks she’s killing it. But it’s comical, like SNL quality,” they added.

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