What does the Bachelor have in common with studded snow tires and bottle rockets?
Hint: Let’s hope Arie Luyendyk Jr. isn’t planning a trip anytime soon to the Bold North.
Because, after Luyendyk proposed to and then dumped Prior Lake publicist Becca Kufrin on national television on Monday, a gentleman from Minnesota took action:
“If this gets a thousand retweets,” state Rep. Drew Christensen, R-Prior Lake, tweeted at 10:38 p.m. Monday, “I’ll author a bill banning Arie from Minnesota. #TheBachelor #PriorLakeLakers.”
Reaction to this unusual move by a politician included these response tweets:
“Okay Minnesota, I know we have many political sides, but we can ALL come together for this.”
“Your interest in the #bachelor is greater than protecting lives. Too bad you were not so quick to draft a gun control bill. #Reality vs #RealityTv”
“omg I love Minnesota”
By Tuesday morning, it looked like the “Bachelor Nation” had responded in force. Christensen’s tweet has now been retweeted more than 8,000 times.
“Drafting the bill now,” he tweeted later. “Should I invite Becca to be my guest at Minnesota’s State of the State Address next week? @thebkoof #TheBachelor”
This invite, Christensen instructed the Twitterosphere, would take 10,000 retweets. By midmorning on Tuesday, he reported that he was “over 75% of the way to inviting Becca to Minnesota’s State of the State!”
After spending Tuesday morning at work in a tax committee at the Minnesota Legislature, Christensen called the Pioneer Press over the lunch hour to answer our questions: Turns out that Christensen, 24, a lifelong Savage resident, knew of Kufrin, 27, when they both attended Prior Lake High School.
“I’m really not a ‘Bachelor’ watcher normally,” said Christensen. “But both my wife and I decided to tune in because of the local connection.”
But it was hard to watch that local connection get her heart broken in such a public fashion — she thought she was having a rendezvous with her fiance at a house in California, but instead, there were two cameras and a whole crew on hand to witness the Bachelor dump the very first Minnesota winner of this reality show competition, which has been around since 2002.
“I thought it was a little much,” said Christensen.
Could the same be said of some of the reaction to his “Bachelor” tweets?
“I feel bad for the people who are taking it so seriously,” he said, “as opposed to a fun, tongue-in-cheek thing.”
“I am drafting a bill,” he said. “I don’t think it will pass.”
We’re not sure if a rose ceremony will accompany an introduction of the bill, which Christensen said could happen as early as Thursday or as late as Monday. However, we wanted to know: Has any person ever been banned from Minnesota before?
“I don’t think so,” Christensen said. “I don’t think it would be actually be constitutional for that to happen.”
What is constitutional, though: “This is a very good lesson in civic engagement,” he says. “It’s very easy for people to interact and engage and get through to their elected officials on social media. It’s a valuable tool — I think that’s the real lesson here. That, and how engaged Minnesotans are willing to be.”
It perhaps also speaks to the power of “Bachelor Nation” to go viral on social media.
“I think the previous best was 50 retweets on a tweet about Gopher football,” says Christensen of his Twitter engagement history.
Meanwhile, Christensen plans to tune in to “The Bachelor” again tonight — at 7 p.m. local time on ABC — to find out if the Bachelor will get back together with the runner-up, Lauren Burnham, and to hear how Kufrin is doing after the shock of what happened.
“You almost feel like you have to,” he said of the drama that has swept the nation.
That way, he’ll also be able to make sure that the Bachelor isn’t planning any trips to Minnesota. Maybe he can also propose some legislation calling for our Minnesota sweetheart to be the next Bachelorette?