Mike Hayhurst in full rodeo clown costume
Although Michelle Obama is generally well-liked around the country, if not loved, apparently she still has work to do. One rodeo clown this weekend in Barstow told a racist joke that not only fell flat, but it has also spread quickly around the country.
The San Luis Obispo Tribune reports that rodeo clown Mike Hayhurst told the audience of the Creston Classic Rodeo that Playboy is offering former Gov. Mitt Romney's wife, Ann, $250,000 to pose in the magazine, but that the White House is upset about it because National Geographic only offered $50 to Mrs. Obama.
The Creston Classic Rodeo board said they are not responsible for the joke, probably won't use him in the future and will ask the clown for a letter to explain himself as well as a public apology, according to the newspaper.
Calls to Hayhurst and the publicity manager of the rodeo went unreturned.
On his website, Hayhurst describes his style as "good clean family comedy always." The site also says that Hayhurst "was once a city police sergeant and is now a charter school administrator."
In a followup article, the Tribune tracked down Hayhurst, who did not apologize for his joke. Instead, he said, "I cannot believe how insensitive you are. I am in the hospital." The paper reports that he was thrown in the rodeo Saturday by a bull.
In a recent CBS News/ New York Times poll, 61 percent of registered voters surveyed gave Mrs. Obama a favorable rating. Only 19 percent of those polled Sept 8-12 gave the first lady an unfavorable rating.
Ann Romney didn't fare as well in the poll. Some 53 percent of those surveyed said they are undecided about her. Just 32 percent of those polled had a favorable view of Mrs. Romney, while 13 percent had an unfavorable view.