Recently, the slogan “Let’s Go Brandon!” has become very popular in various circles. However, its meaning may not be immediately apparent. You may be wondering where the expression comes from, what it stands for, and why it became so popular. So what does let's go Brandon mean? Here’s everything you need to know about one of the fastest-spreading slogans of 2021.
What is “Let’s Go Brandon?”
If you don’t know what “Let’s Go Brandon” refers to, it may seem like a non-sequitur. An October 2021 Convention of States Action survey on national issues polled 1,083 likely 2022 voters and found that 57.7% of respondents knew the origin of the slogan and what it means.
The term came to prominence on October 2, 2021, at the Talladega Superspeedway racing track. It was first heard during an interview between NBC Sports sportscaster Kelli Stavast and NASCAR driver Brandon Brown, minutes after winning the 2021 NASCAR Xfinity Sparks 300.
Stavast, who was conducting a post-race interview with the first-time NASCAR race winner, commented on the sounds of the crowd chanting in the background. She was quoted saying, “You can hear the chants from the crowd, Let’s Go Brandon!”
However, either due to a misunderstanding or an unwillingness to repeat the actual words, it became increasingly evident to viewers that the crowd was, in reality, chanting “Fuck Joe Biden,” a common slogan and expression of antipathy against the 46th president.
Although the origin of the sentence is a legitimate misinterpretation of "Fuck Joe Biden," the slogan “Let’s Go Brandon” was quickly adopted and used intentionally. The slogan became a minced oath: A deliberate act of misspelling or mispronouncing a word or sentence containing a curse word to make it more socially acceptable, such as using "heck" in place of "hell."
Rise in Popularity
Within days, various individuals and groups in conservative circles adopted the slogan as their own, using it as a euphemism for the Talladega crowd’s actual chant. It was also prominently featured on signs and merchandise.
Private individuals even ran afoul of local laws and company policies while expressing the sentence. A Southwest Airlines pilot was placed under investigation after signing off a message to his passengers over the intercom with “Let’s Go Brandon.”
Another example is the Florida homeowner who made the news in November for hanging a giant “Let’s Go Brandon” sign against his county’s land development rules, facing hefty daily fines as a result.
The slogan returned to the world of sports on October 26, 2021, during Game 4 of the Major League Baseball World Series between the Houston Astros and the Atlanta Braves. The game was notable for two reasons: Former President Donald Trump was in attendance with his wife Melania, and the crowd chanted the slogan to Trump’s apparent bemusement.
In November, firearms company Palmetto State Armory was the subject of an NBC article for offering AR-15 lower receivers, magazines, and other parts featuring “Let’s Go Brandon” and “Fuck Joe Biden” lettering.
Palmetto State Armory's LETSGO-15, "Let's Go Brandon" themed AR-15
The article’s author, journalist Ken Dilanian, stated on Twitter that he attempted to contact the U.S. Secret Service for comments regarding the matter.
Joe Biden Agrees. Let's Go Brandon!
On Christmas eve, 2021, the White House held an event allowing people to call in and speak with Joe Biden and his wife, Jill. One caller ended his call with "Let's go Brandon," and Joe Biden responded, "Let's go Brandon, I agree," much to the dismay of his wife, Jill, setting off a firestorm of media attention bemoaning the slogan.
NASCAR's Brandon Brown Endorsed by Let's Go Brandon Coin (LGB Coin)
On December 30 2021 the slogan came full circle when NASCAR driver, Brandon Brown, announced that his main sponsor will now be LGB Coin, a Let's Go Brandon themed crypto currency.
Impact on the Music Industry
As the slogan’s usage increased, so did its relevance in other circles. Two songs titled “Let’s Go Brandon,” each produced by different artists, rose to prominence on multiple music charts.
The first song, “Let’s Go Brandon” by New Jersey rapper Loza Alexander, debuted at #45 on the Billboard Hot 100. This track is notable for heavily sampling the original NBC interview, and its music video, featuring Loza Alexander in a MAGA-style Make Music Great Again hat.
The track briefly sat in the first position in the Rap Digital Song Sales and R&B/Hip-Hop Digital Song Sales category, totaling 1.2 million streams and 35,200 copies sold in its first week.
The second track, “Let’s Go Brandon” by North Carolina rapper Bryson Gray, reached No. 1 on iTunes, Apple’s premium music-on-demand service. The song maintained its position for several days, passing more well-known artists like Drake and Adele.
Gray, who identifies as a Christian Conservative Artist and the most censored rapper in America, attributed his song’s success to a recent ban from YouTube Music.
Usage in Politics
On October 21, less than three weeks after the original interview at Talladega Speedway, the slogan made its way to Congress. Republican congressman Bill Posey of Florida concluded a floor speech criticizing President Biden’s economic agenda with the now-famous slogan.
Since then, there have been multiple other instances of politicians using “Let’s Go Brandon” in public:
October 22: Texas Governor Greg Abbott referenced the slogan on Twitter, criticizing the Biden Administration’s policies.
October 26: South Carolina congressman Jeff Duncan wore a “Let’s Go Brandon” face mask on the House floor.
October 30: While attending Game 2 of the MLB World Series, Texas Senator Ted Cruz posed with a local fan holding a “Let’s Go Brandon” sign.
November 2: The crowd chanted the slogan as it became apparent that Republican Glenn Youngkin beat his Democratic opponent Terry McAuliffe for the Virginia gubernatorial elections.
November 18: Florida Senator Ron DeSantis purposefully selected Brandon, Florida, as the location of a venue to sign an anti-vaccine mandate, referencing the “Let’s Go, Brandon” slogan.
Today, the slogan’s popularity within conservative circles is so high; many news outlets refer to it as an unofficial slogan of the Republican Party.
Online trend analysis
According to Google Trends statistics, Google searches for the slogan started on October 3, 2021, just one day following the NASCAR Xfinity Sparks 300, steadily rising until interest reached a peak between October 26 and November 2.
This period corresponds to the dates for the 2021 MLB World Series games, during which multiple Republican figures were witnessed using “Let’s Go Brandon” in various forms.
Although the trends suggest interest in the slogan waned and leveled off in the United States, “Let’s Go Brandon” has curiously started trending abroad instead.
The first notable international use of the slogan occurred in Melbourne, Australia, during which a crowd of anti-lockdown protesters chanted “Let’s Go, Brandon” in a street protest.
A few days later, a man displayed a “Let’s Go Brandon & Jacinda” sign at a COVID-19 demonstration in Wellington, New Zealand. Jacinda refers to New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern.
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