Politics

Kansas-NYC Feud (?) Escalates as Conservative Who Boycotted Semen (?) Brags That Kansas Goes to the Bathroom in a Toilet (???)

Sorry, but that’s just a straightforward description of what happened.

A photo illustration of Matt Schlapp, Eric Adams and a toilet.
Photo illustration by Slate. Photo by Theo Wargo/Getty Images for Global Citizen, Dio5050/iStock/Getty Images Plus, tomap49/iStock/Getty Images Plus, and Drew Angerer/Getty Images.

Let’s have a look at something and then try to figure out what’s going on.

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Hmm.

Here’s what we know:

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• Eric Adams is the mayor of New York City. One of his campaign promises was that he was going to help the city get its “swagger” back. As you can see above, he’s a cool guy. (Maybe too cool: The New York Times observed him spending 14 nights in a single month at a restaurant run by two ex-felons at which he never appeared to pay for anything he ate. His representatives say he settles his bills every month but haven’t provided any evidence of that.)

• On Tuesday, Adams was speaking with reporters about why he thinks it’s important for New York City to contribute to recovery efforts in Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic, which suffered severe damage from Hurricane Fiona in mid-September. In the course of doing so he made a loosely swagger-related comment that veered for no good reason into an attack on the state of Kansas. As the New York Daily News put it:

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Adams suggested that his trip to the Caribbean was about more than just gauging the damage — that it also served to provide people there with hope. … “This city was saying to people that they matter,” Adams said. “We have a brand. New York has a brand, and when people see it, it means something.”

He then added: “Kansas doesn’t have a brand. New York has a brand,” he continued. “That brand means diversity, that brand means we care, that brand means we are compassionate.”

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Kansas catching strays! F–– off, Kansas!

• The director of the American Conservative Union, an organization that runs the extremist-friendly Conservative Political Action Conference series, is a longtime Republican operative named Matt Schlapp who has deftly kept himself relevant in the party as it’s rebalanced itself away from a God-and-tax cuts focus (Schlapp worked for both George W. Bush and fiscal superconservative Sam Brownback) into one that is more oriented toward hostile online “shitposting.” Last April he tweeted that his family would no longer be drinking “come” in what was probably (probably) a misspelling of the word Coke. (The tweet was related to the Coca-Cola company’s criticism of a restrictive Republican-backed voting law in Georgia.)

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• Schlapp is, originally, from Kansas.

• Especially now that inflation and gas prices have cooled a bit, Republican midterm messaging has focused on Democrats’ purported role in creating a nationwide wave of both crime and gender-changing. As always, New York City is considered the epicenter of these trends. (F–– off, New York!)

Now, here’s what we don’t know:

• What any of this has to do with using “the toilets” to “go.”

Schlapp might be referring to the ineradicable viral hoax about leftist school administrators providing litter boxes to students who “identify” as animals. Or he could be referring to the popular image of New York City as a mecca of degeneracy whose streets are soaked in the urine of both humans and rats, which, to be fair, is accurate. Or it could be something exciting that people who aren’t on right-wing Facebook don’t know about yet! (Schlapp did not respond to this reporter’s follow-up query.)

Finally, as a Democratic congressman from northern Virginia noted, Schlapp—according to his own Twitter bio—lives in Alexandria, Virginia. Heartland toilet stuff for the voters, tolerant cosmopolitanism for their leaders—it’s one of the most consistent conservative values of them all!

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