While there are several months to go before we find out if a Republican can unseat the incumbent in the White House, right now, the Democrats lead the Republicans in “worst PR spellers” race. A couple of weeks ago, someone from Rick Santorum’s staff misspelled a town in the state of Minnesota in a press release about Santorum’s schedule. It’s “Bemidji,” not “Bimidii” as it was written in the release.
Democrats wouldn’t be outdone. In a press release issued yesterday on Vice President Joe Biden’s travel schedule, Rhode Island was spelled “Road” Island. For spelling gaffes, this one takes the cake. I can only imagine what happened: some intern didn’t have those state capital flash cards as a kid. But who knows, it might have been a communicator with 10 years of experience.
Regardless, the error has drawn plenty of media coverage and lots of snarky comments online from those who think Joe Biden was never qualified to be the VP in the first place. In fact, the gaffe even has its own name, “Biden Blooper.”
What interests me is that the term “spell check” was used in several of the articles—as in spell check wouldn’t catch the error because “road” is a real word. As if that could be a valid excuse for the mistake. What did happen is someone who didn’t know the correct spelling of one of the 50 states was allowed to write a press release about the Vice President of the United States. Then, nobody proofed the release. As an experiment, last night I asked my 7-year-old how to spell Rhode Island, and you know what? He spelled it “R-O-A-D.”
Now where are those flash cards?
Follow Scott Van Camp: @svancamp01