Bette Midler made to apologize after calling West Virginians 'poor, illiterate and strung out'

Midler says she was taking out her anger at West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin's decision to quash Build Back Better.

Published: December 21, 2021 1:09pm

Updated: December 21, 2021 2:27pm

Legendary entertainer and Broadway icon Bette Midler was forced to apologize after sparking an online backlash for calling residents of West Virginia "poor, illiterate and strung out."

The 76-year-old, intensely angered by West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin's (D) decision not to back the Build Back Better Act, wrote on Twitter: "What #JoeManchin, who represents a population smaller than Brooklyn, has done to the rest of America, who wants to move forward, not backward, like his state, is horrible. He sold us out."

Adding, "He wants us all to be just like his state, West Virginia. Poor, illiterate and strung out."

Midler quickly met the Twitter mob, who lambasted her "elite bulls**."

"This is exactly what they think of good hardworking Americans that live outside of their elite bulls**t NY/LA bubbles," Donald Trump Jr. wrote in response to Midler's comment.

"Not all West Virginians are illiterate, poor, or strung out. We don’t all check that stereotypical box. Just like I’m sure not all Manhattanites are short-sighted, egotistical, 'I’m better than everyone' a**holes. Right?! You’ve lost a fan," wrote one user. 

Following the outrage, Midler tweeted, "I apologize to the good people of WVA for my last outburst. I'm just seeing red; #JoeManchin and his whole family are a criminal enterprise. Is he really the best WV has to offer its own citizens? Surely there's someone there who has the state's interests at heart, not his own!"

One user replied, "Apology not accepted ... That is obviously what you think of us, if it weren't then you would have never thought to say it in the first place."

Midler has been known to sometimes cause a stir with her social media presence, having previously ruffled some feathers when she called then-First Lady Melania Trump an "illegal alien" after mocking her accent during a speech at the 2020 RNC. 

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