Sen. John Fetterman (D-Pa.) has long made the homeless man look his signature style, even since becoming a U.S. Senator. While many Americans find it insulting to the institution of the Senate, Fetterman shows no sign of ditching the sweatshirt and baggy shorts for something more professional and befitting a U.S. Senator.
Last week, Fetterman showed just how much contempt he has for dressing for his job when he joined Sens. Ed Markey (D-Mass.) and Peter Welch (D-Vt.) for a press conference on the ongoing debt ceiling negotiations. Under normal circumstances, Fetterman’s struggle with reading from his prepared remarks would be the most notable aspect of the event. But what truly caught people’s attention was his appearance as he delivered his remarks at the podium dressed in a white Carhartt sweatshirt and black shorts. In contrast, he was flanked by Markey and Welch, who wore suits.
Fetterman has sported a sweatshirt and baggy shorts since long before becoming a Senator. While most people probably assumed he’d grow up and start presenting himself more professionally, it appears he has no intentions of abandoning his signature style.
And, naturally, the Associated Press seems to think this is a good thing. The AP noted that before he checked himself into Walter Reed for clinical depression, Fetterman actually did dress formally while walking the halls of the Senate, but he has returned to his signature style of hoodies and gym shorts following his discharge. Despite the expectation for male senators to wear jackets and ties on the Senate floor, Fetterman has found a way around it.
According to the report, Fetterman “votes from the doorway of the Democratic cloakroom or the side entrance, making sure his “yay” or “nay” is recorded before ducking back out. In between votes this past week, Fetterman’s hoodie stayed on for a news conference with four Democratic colleagues in suits, the 6-foot-8 Fetterman towering over his colleagues.”
It’s true that in the grand scheme of things, there are bigger fish to fry. But the way the Associated Press tries to celebrate this as some sort of great new trend is baffling and frankly absurd.
Related: How Long Does the Media Think It Can Cover for Fetterman’s Cognitive Impairment?
According to the AP, Fetterman’s homeless look is “redefining fashion in the stuffy Senate.”
“The senator’s staff had originally asked him to always wear suits, which he famously hates,” the report admits. “But after a check with the Senate parliamentarian upon his return, it became clear that he could continue wearing the casual clothes that were often his uniform back at home in Pennsylvania, as long as he didn’t walk on to the Senate floor.”
I’m so glad that Fetterman’s biggest priority is finding ways to avoid wearing suits. He spent months asking the people of Pennsylvania to send him to the U.S. Senate, and now he can’t be bothered to clean up and dress the part, so much so he’ll literally vote from the doorway just to avoid wearing a suit? It reminds me of how on Seinfeld, George Constanza infamously spent more energy pretending to look for a job to stay on unemployment than actually looking for a job. By prioritizing his personal “style” over professional standards, Fetterman undermines the seriousness and integrity of the Senate. It leads me to question not only his commitment to his job but also his mental health.