Kari Lake refuses to stand during Sheryl Lee Ralph’s performance of civil rights anthem

‘The Super Bowl is in Arizona so don’t be surprised if they don’t accept the results’

Sravasti Dasgupta
Monday 13 February 2023 06:35 GMT
Related video: Kansas Chiefs celebrate winning 2023 Super Bowl

Kari Lake is facing backlash for sitting through a popular civil rights hymn at the Super Bowl.

Before Sunday’s Super Bowl liftoff, actor Sheryl Lee Ralph performed “Lift Every Voice and Sing”, a song that has been a part of the NFL since the 2020 Black Lives Matter protests and considered to be the Black national anthem.

Photos on social media showed Ms Lake – the Republican candidate who lost the Arizona Senate race last November – sitting through the song, something for which Twitter users criticised her.

The backlash came during a Super Bowl contest that saw the Philadelphia Eagles win against the Kansas City Chiefs at State Farm Stadium in Glendale, Arizona.

As photos of Ms Lake sitting went viral on social media, one user said she was a “pseudo-patriot”.

“Every day [Kari Lake] shows how horrible & hateful she is,” said another Twitter user.

“The Super Bowl is in Arizona so don’t be surprised if they don’t accept the results,” said another user.

Ms Lake’s Twitter team has hit back at those who criticised her for not rising for the song.

“Our girl is against the idea of a ‘black National Anthem’ for the same reason she’s against a ‘white National Anthem’. She subscribes to the idea of ‘one Nation, under God’,” tweeted the Kari Lake War Room.

The tweet also accused Katie Hobbs of being “against it because she just simply hates black people”.

Ms Hobbs defeated Ms Lake in the November election by over 17,000 votes and became Arizona governor.

The Kari Lake War Room, Ms Lake’s official campaign account, was replying to a tweet by Benny Johnson, a host on the conservative news network Newsmax.

In another tweet from her personal Twitter account, Ms Lake responded to Johnson’s tweet and said: “I’m just here for THE National Anthem.”

Other Republican conservatives also took to Twitter and accused the NFL of trying to divide Americans.

“America only has ONE NATIONAL ANTHEM. Why is the NFL trying to divide us by playing multiple!? Do football, not wokeness,” tweeted Colorado Republicam Lauren Boebert.

Former Republican Senate candidate James Bradley tweeted: “Having a black national anthem is just another way that Democrats keep us divided.”

Ms Lake has consistently denied the legitimacy of Ms Hobbs’ victory, but her legal challenges against the new governor have not yielded to a breakthrough.

Earlier this month, Arizona Secretary of State Adrian Fontes said Ms Lake may have committed a campaign violation for disclosing of voter signatures on Twitter.

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