Biden leans into “Dark Brandon” meme after Chiefs’ Super Bowl win

Biden leans into "Dark Brandon" meme after Chiefs' Super Bowl win


Political strategists on Biden’s memory

President Biden embraced the once right-wing “Dark Brandon” meme on Sunday, appearing to mock the conspiracy theory revolving around the NFL and Taylor Swift’s endorsement.

“Just like we drew it up,” Mr. Biden wrote in a post on X after the Chiefs’ win, along with a meme of the president with red lasers coming from his eyes that’s become known as “Dark Brandon.”

Conspiracy theories surrounding the Kansas City Chiefs’ Super Bowl success, Taylor Swift and the Democratic Party began circling in recent weeks, after reports that Mr. Biden was seeking the pop star’s endorsement for his reelection in November. 

Earlier in Swift’s career, she had stayed out of political endorsements, but in 2018, she issued her first political endorsement, for Democratic Tennessee Gov. Phil Bredesen in the Senate race against Republican candidate Marsha Blackburn. In the 2020 election, she backed Mr. Biden. 

The theory that the Super Bowl game was rigged in the Chiefs’ favor was parroted among some conservative circles, where it was suggested that a win would give Swift an opportunity to endorse Mr. Biden in the presidential election.

“Dark Brandon” signs are seen ahead of the third Republican Debate in Miami on November 08, 2023 in Miami, Florida.

Jason Koerner/Getty Images for DNC

Ahead of the Super Bowl, former President Donald Trump seemed to weigh in on the theorized Swift endorsement, saying in a social media post that “there’s no way she could endorse Crooked Joe Biden,” saying that the president “didn’t do anything for Taylor, and never will.”

The Biden campaign has repeatedly leaned into the “Dark Brandon” meme, appearing to mock right-wing conspiracy theories with the superhero depiction that arose out of the right’s “Let’s Go Brandon” slogan that opposed Biden. The campaign also unveiled its first TikTok video on Sunday, which likewise featured mention of the Dark Brandon persona, as the campaign looks to appeal to the app’s younger audiences heading into November’s election. 

But Biden has faced intense criticism from young progessive voters over his approach to the conflict between Israel and Hamas in recent weeks. And allegations in a new report about the president’s memory have positioned questions about his age front and center as he looks to secure support from his base for four more years in the White House. 

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