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Multiple White House staffers and Democrats have taken to social media attempting to rebrand President Biden as “dark Brandon” amid a series of legislative victories.
“Dark Brandon is crushing it,” Andrew Bates, the White House deputy press secretary, tweeted Sunday evening along with an image of Biden with laser eyes.
“Your malarkey has been going on for long enough, kiddo,” read the image’s caption.
Bates then tweeted another meme with the captions “the malarkey will end” and “the dark Brandon rises” in response to a tweet criticizing his initial post. The image appeared to depict Biden as Batman.
But conservatives pointed out that the second image tweeted by Bates included eagle imagery resembling the logo used by the Nazi Party in the 1930s.
“Personally, I’m not surprised that you’re tweeting out Nazi eagle imagery of your boss who reminisces about his segregationist ‘mentor,'” Abigail Marone, a spokesperson for Sen. Josh Hawley, R-Mo., tweeted.
“‘Dark Brandon’ started as Chinese propaganda and then the White House co-opted it using Nazi Eagle imagery…” Alec Sears, a digital staffer at the Republican National Committee, tweeted. “They’re not sending their best.”
“In 2020, the Trump campaign faced a week of stories and fact checks about a t-shirt with an eagle on it,” Tim Murtaugh, the communications director for former President Trump’s 2020 campaign, tweeted. “Let’s see if a tweet from an official Biden White House account gets the same treatment.”
The “Dark Brandon” moniker appears to have started on Twitter in March among anonymous Biden supporters seeking to create an “edgy” version of the president, according to an online meme database. The meme also seeks to co-opt the “let’s go Brandon” meme that originated among conservatives online and has become popular for those that oppose the Biden administration’s agenda.
In addition, Rob Flaherty, the White House director of digital strategy, tweeted an image of Biden with laser eyes. Sen. Chris Murphy, D-Conn., also appeared to parrot the “dark Brandon” meme, posting an animation of Biden without pupils without a caption Sunday.
Megan Apper, who left the White House earlier this year to join the State Department, joined in on the “Dark Brandon” tweets, tweeting, “Dark Brandon said ‘here’s the deal’ and then there was a deal.”
The apparent rebranding of Biden comes after several victories Democrats said showed the president has been successful overcoming gridlock on Capitol Hill.
In June, Biden signed a gun control bill that incentivizes states to approve red flag laws and introduce increased background checks, and last week, Biden signed the $280 billion Chips and Science Act, which boosts funding for the domestic semiconductor supply chain.
And, on Sunday, the Senate approved the Inflation Reduction Act, a sweeping budget reconciliation package that would introduce new green energy incentives and attempt to lower pharmaceutical prices.
“For decades, the gun lobby and the oil companies and the drug industry controlled Washington. And ordinary people suffered,” Murphy tweeted. “And [sic] then, in one summer, all that changed. The first gun safety bill in 30 years. Historic climate change legislation. Caps on drug costs. Just wow.”
However, conservatives were quick to criticize Democrats claiming victory and rebranding Biden as “dark Brandon.”
“You can try to Dark Brandon meme your way out of sub-40 approval ratings all you want, but throwing hundreds of billions at green boondoggles in the middle of an inflationary spiral isn’t going to turn things around,” conservative commentator Ben Shapiro tweeted Monday.