It's Shark Week, MF'ers: The internet loves Gretchen Whitmer's sassy mouth

August 18, 2020, 1:37 PM by  Alan Stamm

She governs like a boss and swears like a sailor -- what's not to admire, really?

Only Gretchen Whitmer knows if she regrets a pre-TV aside Monday night that old-school journalists report with asterisks. The governor should be amused -- flattered even -- by the badass image reinforcement she earns with "a moment of levity," as she puts it in a WXYZ interview. 

In case you've been in a media-blackout quarantine, this is what has been watched over a half-million times:

Michigan's lieutenant governor joins the playful smirks:

The governor's quip before her four minutes of less colorful Democratic National Convention remarks referred to the yearly Discovery Channel sharkfest that ended Sunday.

We haven't seen her phrase on clothing yet, though a Reddit admirer suggests that inevitable step: "Can someone make this into a T-shirt," asks a Grand Rapids user posting as BGAL7090.

Another Redditor comments: "This only increases my admiration for her."

While the raw talk (or "irreverent joke," as a Detroit News headline calls it) entertains some of those already on her side, it alienates others -- just as Rep. Rashida Tlaib did in January 2019 with the same compound-word choice in a call for impeachment at a reception after her swearing-in. 

Twitter comments under the clip posted by The Recount.

"Not a good look for Whitmer. She should know better," tweets Scott R. Daniel of Novi.

Others are more understanding, forgiving or giddy. A social media sampler is below and at right:

  • "No wonder she made the short list." -- Juliana Clegg, tech startup CEO in Redwood City, Calif.

  • "I'd love a quick release for an apology: 'Sorry for swearing, but I fucking love Shark Week.'" -- "Tilapia of Doom" (Reddit)

  •  "And here I thought it was fix the roads week m----f----." -- Mark F., Detroit News reader

  • "I love her even more now." -- Susan M., Freep reader

  • "She seems to be a person who would be good to have a beer with. ... I appreciate her more every day." --  Alison (Reddit)

  • "Love her sense of humor. We all need a break once in a while." -- Alvin C., Detroit News reader

  • "Didn't think I'd start my Tuesday morning discussing with fellow editors how to bleep out the word motherf***er in a story, but here we are!" -- Brian Manzullo, Detroit Free Press

And from candle entrepreneur Devin Stevens of Adrian, Mich., comes this instant offering:

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