Georgia Republicans are enraged at a TikTok'er who filmed himself calling Georgia voters in advance of the Senate runoff there on January 5.
His supposed crime? Using a Southern accent to speak to the voters.
The clips shows TikToker Adrian Elliot pretending to call a voter in Decatur, Georgia from his apartment in Los Angeles, using a thick Southern drawl.
As the clip continues, Elliot oozes more and more "Southern hospitality" to the person on the other end, telling them about the Democratic runoff candidates, Reverend Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff.
At the end of the phone call, Elliot puts down his phone, looks straight into the camera with a deadly serious look and drops the Southern accent to say:
"Whatever it fu*king takes."
The closing line is in reference to the importance of the runoff, which will determine which party controls the Senate during the first two years of Joe Biden's presidency.
Many on TikTok found the video hilarious. But Republicans, in Georgia and across the country, are signaling deep offense at the supposed denigration Elliot shows toward Southerners.
The Georgia Republican Party featured Elliot's TikTok on its Twitter account with the caption:
"This is what the coastal elites in Washington and California (who are trying to influence the #GASen runoffs) think of Georgians."
Senator David Perdue, who is Democrat Jon Ossoff's opponent in the upcoming runoff, used similar rhetoric in a tweet of his own, castigating Elliot, a non-famous TikToker with just over 2,000 followers, as an "elite" looking down on Georgians.
This is how out-of-state California elites view the people of Georgia. It’s offensive, it’s pathetic, & it won’t wo… https://t.co/Yy2xTpnf7I— David Perdue (@David Perdue)1605645846.0
In contrast to his response to the TikTok, Perdue has been publicly silent about attempts by President Trump, his administration, and other Republican party members to compel Georgia's state election authorities to invalidate voters' legally cast ballots in an effort to overturn the election's results.
On social media, responses to Elliot's video were split—and not just along party lines. Many, Democrats and Republicans alike, felt his video was inappropriate and counterproductive.
Sincerely hate this. It is so important that @ReverendWarnock and @ossoff are elected and this type of “support” wi… https://t.co/Qu4adzsOGy— Alaina Vacante (@Alaina Vacante)1605647327.0
it's the sneering contempt for the voters you purportedly want on your side and the sanctimonious lack of understan… https://t.co/b5XklzPS0o— Hannah Riley (@Hannah Riley)1605636232.0
I laughed 0 times. https://t.co/JsJF9IJDeL— Taylor Walden (@Taylor Walden)1605630286.0
This isn’t it. At all. https://t.co/IGB21r6TTb— haidi (@haidi)1605627382.0
This is so insulting. https://t.co/WbhITlMiI3— Justin Lucas (@Justin Lucas)1605636575.0
yea so this is super patronizing (and of course they know nothing about GA bc Alpharetta is like all transplants f… https://t.co/i33PyV2avq— hunter™️ (@hunter™️)1605644358.0
@davejorgenson If there are two things Southerners love it’s outsiders getting involved in our affairs and condesce… https://t.co/xdEtTyJtXq— Hamp Oldshue (@Hamp Oldshue)1605625007.0
But many others thought the video was hilarious.
Y’all learn how to take a joke. As a GA voter I find this funny 😂 https://t.co/S9IZl5qJk9— Caragan Thiel (@Caragan Thiel)1605637380.0
This is brilliant. https://t.co/PEIkBobiYu— Diana (@Diana)1605623221.0
This is funny, but the grain of truth that makes it funny is the naked contempt for these voters from the coasts. https://t.co/VLPE9Dt1iM— Noah Rothman (@Noah Rothman)1605623004.0
Both races in the hotely contested runoff—between Perdue and Ossoff, and Reverend Warnock and his opponent, Senator Kelly Loeffler—are currently tied according to recent polling.