Sen. John Fetterman (D-Penn.) is embracing—and now profiting from—a right-wing conspiracy theory that he has been replaced with a “body double.”
The lawmaker’s online store now sells a $35 black T-shirt that reads “John Fetterman’s Body Double.” Fetterman’s new merchandise was first reported by Insider.
“John has loved having fun with the body-double conspiracy theory and the new Senate dress code, and he loves trolling,” spokesperson Joe Calvello told Insider. “This is an example of all those things meeting.”
The body double conspiracy has been floated for months, prompting the Pennsylvania Democrat in April to post a joke video showing two versions of himself.
“During my time during the hospital, the fringy fringies really came up with a conspiracy theory that I have a body double,” Fetterman said. “And I just want you to know that’s just crazy. That’s not true.”
Seconds later, a second Fetterman walks into the room and asks, “Yo, dude, John, what event am I supposed to be doing this afternoon?”
The conspiracy theory caught a second wind this week, prompting Fetterman to respond on Tuesday in his traditional fashion: with a meme.
The body double claims stem from Fetterman’s recovery from a stroke last May. After being released from the hospital for treatment for depression, Fetterman’s doctor noted that his mental health issues may have hampered his stroke recovery but that the lawmaker has since experienced notable improvements in his speech.
“With improvement in his depression, improvement in the patient’s speech abilities was noticeable and we believe that significant continued improvement is likely with continued outpatient rehabilitation,” Dr. David Williamson said in discharge notes shared by Fetterman.
“Fetterman has expressed a firm commitment to engaging in this rehabilitation process,” Williamson added. “His depression, now resolved, may have been a barrier to engagement.”
Fetterman was also in the spotlight this week after the Senate axed its dress code. The politician is notorious for his casual dress and often sports a hoodie and shorts.
Some of Fetterman’s other new merchandise points to the remarks that he has received from conservatives regarding his clothing choices.
One other shirt showcases numerous quotes such as “disgraceful,” “disgusting,” “revolting slob,” and “crazy stroke victim.”