There was a fracas when Howard Dean made an ill-formed comment about seeking the southern vote, subsequently articulated as the NASCAR vote. Will there be another to-do, now that Bush has entertained race-car drivers at the White House, joking about “stock cars on the lawn” and the “Bubbas” in his own staff?

Now, I know that Dean’s comment about confederate flags and pickup trucks connects to a particularly simmering mess over the South, racism, and candidate chic (Jesse and Ezra at pandagon have had some thoughtful posts about candidates making brain-dead and hopeless appeals on this sort of ground lately), and there’s no doubt that what he said just wasn’t very smart. But here is the President making jokes that play unambiguously on white trash stereotypes of the South, and somehow he gets credit for being folksy? I guess he’s just real authentic that way. Also, is there a public event where the guy has not used his “marrying well” line? Could we suspend that one for a while, maybe rotate it out for a “clearing brush” line or something?