Clint Eastwood walked onto the stage at the Republican National Convention and then started to talk…to a chair. And a Teleprompter.
His quips were snipes at President Obama. At lawyers. He even evoked the f-word.
But after what seemed like an extended skit, or maybe even performance art, he recovered somewhat, drawing huge cheers when he told the convention,
“When someone does not do the job, we got to let him go,” he said to cheers in the arena.
A delegate shouted “Make my day,” and, after first telling the crowd that he “doesn’t say that anymore,” Eastwood led the arena in a group chant of his famous catchphrase.
Eastwood called himself a “movie tradesman” in a town that many Republicans assume leans left, but he tried to explain that Hollywood was more moderate than most people thought.
Nevertheless, his appearance drew bafflement on Twitter, where comments flew quickly. “Clint Eastwood became a huge star as a man of few words. As a surprise guest on the Tampa stage he had too many words (I say that as a friend),” wrote Tom Brokaw.
“Respect to Clint. 82 years old and putting Twitter over capacity,” wrote Seth Meyers.
After three days of carefully staged and scripted events, it was a rare moment of chance — and it may be the last time that a GOP convention takes one.
“I think I just drank Clint Eastwood’s water,” Marco Rubio quipped as he followed the actor.