Four men vying for the Republican nomination for governor of Idaho had a debate last night, and an SNL sketch broke out. Seriously, the least weird thing about it was the incumbent governor, and his name is Butch Otter.
The important thing to know is that voters in Idaho aren't limited just to suits like Otter and Russ Fulcher, some boring dude with a red tie and a cauliflower nose. They can also anoint as their state leader a leather-clad Harley enthusiast named Harley and a Bible-fearing Wilford Brimley-impersonating mountain man named Walt Bayes. Here are the guys in question:
And man, can these bubbas talk the shit out of some debates. You owe it to yourself to watch these highlights in the video above:
Harley Brown's introductory speech begins at 4:43, complete with colorful hearkening back to his games of bang-bang as a kid: "Don't think I'm crazy, 'cause I'm not!"
Walt Bayes has his turn immediately after, at 5:51: "I stand on principles. I went to jail for homeschoolin', and my kids turned out pretty good. I've got four sons that made rodeo cowboys, and one daughter."
He speaks so passionately about abortion that his Santa beard and his Teddy Roosevelt specs shake above his Boy Scouts-style khaki western shirt: "If the Supreme Court goes to hell, I'm not followin'. And I'm telling you folks, when you murder 56 million babies, you're asking for our country to be demolished."
Later, the conversation turns to gay marriage; a federal judge earlier this week overturned Idaho's ban. At 8:20—it's cued up in the video above—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.
That is all the first 11 minutes of an hourlong debate. Idaho, motherfuckers!