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Southwest Airlines Pilot ‘Let’s Go Brandon’ Claim By AP Under Question
A Southwest Airlines Boeing 737-73V jet departs Midway International Airport in Chicago, Illinois, on April 6, 2021.
Kamil Krzaczynski/AFP via Getty Images

On Saturday, an Associated Press reporter sparked a national story by claiming that a Southwest Airlines pilot had signed off his greeting last Friday to passengers by saying, “Let’s Go Brandon,” the ubiquitous phrase used as a substitute for “F*** Joe Biden.”  But further reports indicate that not only was the phrase in the audio clipped so it was possible the pilot was saying “Let’s Go Braves,” rather than “Let’s Go Brandon,” the audio reportedly did not come from last Friday, but at least two weeks earlier.

The Daily Wire reported on Monday:

Southwest Airlines is conducting an internal investigation into reports that one of its pilots said “Let’s go, Brandon” over the intercom during a flight The airline released a statement Sunday condemning the reported incident and announcing an internal investigation. The pilot allegedly said “Let’s go, Brandon” — an anti-Biden phrase popularized after a reporter misheard a crowd chanting “f*** Joe Biden” — during a flight from Houston to Albuquerque.

“The Southwest Team takes pride in providing a welcoming, comfortable, safe, and respectful environment for the millions of customers who fly with us each year. Southwest does not condone Employees sharing their personal political opinions while on the job serving our Customers, and one Employee’s individual perspective should not be interpreted as the viewpoint of Southwest and its collective 54,000 Employees,” the airline said in a statement.

AP reported on Saturday:

On Friday morning on a Southwest flight from Houston to Albuquerque, the pilot signed off his greeting over the public address system with the phrase, to audible gasps from some passengers. Southwest said in a statement that the airline “takes pride in providing a welcoming, comfortable, and respectful environment” and that “behavior from any individual that is divisive or offensive is not condoned.”

The AP reporter boasted, “TFW you’re trying to go on vacation and then the pilot says the very thing you’re working on over the loud speaker and you have to try to get him comment but then almost get removed from plane.”

She added, “Also in defense of airline I was asking them to open locked cock pit and probably sounded insane!”

And then there’s this:

The “Let’s Go Brandon” meme was triggered on October 3 when NBC sports reporter Kelli Stavast was interviewing NASCAR driver Brandon Brown at Talladega Superspeedway in Alabama after Brown scored his first career NASCAR Xfinity Series win. Stavast stated, as shown in a video, that the crowd was chanting “Let’s go, Brandon!” when in reality they were chanting “F*** Joe Biden.”

NBC Sports wrote in its coverage of Brown’s win:

Brandon Brown earned his first career NASCAR Xfinity Series win when Saturday’s race at Talladega Superspeedway was called for darkness six laps from the scheduled distance.

“Oh my God! Oh my God!” Brown said on his team’s radio. “Wow! Just wow! Oh my God! This is a dream come true! This is a dream come true!”

Brown’s victory came in his 114th career series start.

Brown told NBCSN, “Oh my God, Dad, we did it!! Everything we hoped and dreamed for. Everything I wanted to do is take the trophy home to Mom and Dad.”

On October 10, asked by an announcer to “help kick this thing off” at the NAPA Super DIRT Week Pro Stock 50 event at Oswego Speedway on Sunday, one young boy, who was asked along with another young boy and young girl, continued after the three intoned “Drivers, start your engines” by asserting, “Let’s Go, Brandon.”

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