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GOP Digs HRC with 404 Page

RNC-404-page

Slate‘s Will Oremus calls attention to a clever Republican jab at the Democratic frontrunner for 2o16: “The Republicans’ 404 Error Page Is a Hillary Clinton Joke.”

The Republicans have not lately been known as the party of Internet savvy, as eventheir own party operatives will admit. But give them credit, at least, for making the best of a bad situation when something goes wrong on the party’s official website, GOP.com.

As of at least mid-September, the image above is what appears when you type in the wrong Web address or follow a link to a page that isn’t working. You can find it for yourself by mistyping the URL for any GOP.com page—e.g., https://www.gop.com/leaders/rational/ instead ofhttps://www.gop.com/leaders/national/.

Granted, the joke—a reference to a comment Clinton made in a June interview with Diane Sawyer—is not exactly comic genius. But it’s probably good for at least a chuckle from the party faithful, which is a step up from the frustration that 404 notices typically engender. And it’s certainly better than the “page not found” that appeared in 2010 when visitors to the re-launched GOP.com clicked on a link to its “Future GOP leaders” page.

It may not be comic genius but it’s pitch-perfect:  poking fun at the opponent without being mean spirited and also subtle, intended to deliver a chuckle to those who stumble on it by accident rather than an in-your-face jab. Once upon a time, that was SOP for the GOP.

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About James Joyner
James Joyner is the publisher of Outside the Beltway, an associate professor of security studies at the Marine Corps Command and Staff College, and a nonresident senior fellow at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. He earned a PhD in political science from The University of Alabama. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter.

Comments

  1. John Peabody says:

    We’ll see if it’s true that Democrats can’t take a joke.

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  2. gVOR08 says:

    Once upon a time, that was SOP for the GOP.

    When was that?

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  3. beth says:

    I guess as Republican humor goes it’s okay. Laugh out loud funny, no. Logical – not really since she said she was dead broke, not that she is currently dead broke, which is what the website is now and she isn’t. At least they’re trying, bless their hearts.

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  4. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Heh. I think it’s funny.

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  5. anjin-san says:

    Not really seeing much humor here. Ann Romney says she knows what it means to struggle because they had to sell some stock to get through college. People with lots of money see the world a bit differently – is this news?

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  6. James Joyner says:

    @gVOR08: It was pretty standard during the Reagan and Bush 41 period. There was less vitriol and more good natured humor.

    @anjin-san: Ann Romney isn’t a professional politician, much less the frontrunner to be our next president. I think it’s a clever jab at a verbal stumble, not a keen insight into HRC’s character.

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  7. gVOR08 says:

    @James Joyner: To some extent. That period also included the Willie Horton ad, the Swift Boat campaign, and “Senator, I served with Jack Kennedy. I knew Jack Kennedy. Jack Kennedy was a friend of mine. Senator, you’re no Jack Kennedy.”

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  8. anjin-san says:

    @James Joyner:

    Meh. On the clever scale of 1 to 10, I give it a “3” – it’s just that 3 is pretty good for Republicans these days.

    I will agree that Hillary has been completely tone deaf on this issue, and that may become a real problem for her.

    Bush 41 period

    The one that gave us Lee Atwater? The vitriol really took off when a Democrat took the White House after 12 years of Republican administrations. Conservatives turned the rage up to 11. Now it is up to about 17, and real damage is being done to the country in the process.

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  9. Barry says:

    “It may not be comic genius but it’s pitch-perfect: poking fun at the opponent without being mean spirited and also subtle, intended to deliver a chuckle to those who stumble on it by accident rather than an in-your-face jab. Once upon a time, that was SOP for the GOP.”

    I’ll admit that it is a syntactically valid joke, but beyond that it’s the sort of aren’t-we-so-smart insider thing which people who don’t do well laugh at.

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  10. Franklin says:

    Too much analysis here. It’s fine, it’s a little joke.

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