A new ad from a Michigan gubernatorial contender who's shaping up to be the GOP's Shri Thanedar is heavy on the car metaphors and Whitmer hate.
Kevin Rinke, the 60-year-old ex-owner of a metro Detroit car dealership group, has said he'll self-finance his campaign at the tune of at least $10 million. Last week he sunk $226,000 of that into cable and TV ad time, according to the political advertising blog AdImpact Politics.
In his first campaign video, Rinke compares Whitmer to a Yugo while zooming around in a Black GTO. The Yugo, for those under 35 (presumably, not Rinke's demo), was the affordable but much-maligned Reagan-era import from Yugoslavia that inspired the quip "Yugo nowhere."
"The Yugo, like the terrible socialist system it came from, it's a pile of junk," Rinke says.
Gretchen Whitmer is also a Yugo, he says — "straight off the assembly line of disastrous career politicans." The video cuts to a two-door hatchback printed with the governor's alleged failings: "Whitmer lockdown," "Whitmer flew away," and just "Whitmer" with a crown over it.
Rinke's other dislikes include the "tyrannical government" in Lansing, "critical race theory" and "voter fraud" (here, we see an image of boards going up over the TCF Center during last year's presidential election count). Somewhere in the midst of all this the words "illegal immigration" hang over of a shot of what looks to be a blighted house in Detroit.
And then there are the car metaphors:
"I'm running for governor because in Michigan we don't get taken for a ride, we drive."
"We face a choice to either drive Michigan into the ground or blaze a bold new path of freedom and opportunity."
Rinke's toughest competitor for the GOP nomination will likely be ex-Detroit Police Chief James Craig, who has struggled to find his footing and was recently dumped by his campaign manager.