Sacha Baron Cohen appeared to make a secret appearance at a Conservative rally in Washington on Saturday where he encouraged attendees into singing along to racially insensitive lyrics.
A rally, billed as "March for Our Rights 3," took place at Olympia’s Heritage Park Saturday. Washington State Patrol troopers told The Olympian that the event had over 500 attendees.
James Connor Blair, a city council member in Yelm, Washington, took to Facebook to write about the surprise appearance, in which he claims Baron Cohen was "disguised as a PAC out of Southern California." Blair writes that the comedian came on stage disguised as a lead singer for a band and sang "racist, hateful" lyrics.
In videos posted of the performance online, the performer could be overheard singing lyrics such as, "Obama what we gotta do, inject him with the Wuhan flu" and "Corona is a liberal hoax" as he encouraged the audience to sing along.
"His security blocked event organizers from getting him off the stage or pulling power from the generator," Blair writes.
As soon as the crowd caught on to the racist lyrics, "security rushed the stage and evacuated them to a waiting private ambulance that was contracted to be their escape transport." "It was a set up and smack in the face of the great people who put on this event," Blair says of of what he considers to be a prank of Baron Cohen's.
Meanwhile, organization The Washington State Three Percenters also addressed the performance on their Facebook, calling it a "display of disgusting antics."
"We of the WA3% were appalled at the performance of an entertainer adorned in clown-face, who --- much to our group's mutual repugnance --- voiced a series of racist and antisemitic jokes and songs, while on the stand," the organization wrote. "This display of disgusting antics was neither condoned nor accepted by WA3%, and we disavow any affiliation with this lamentable individual. Our ranks enjoy the membership of every race, religion, and creed, and such despicable behavior is NEVER allowed within our group, and if it ever arises, it causes the immediate dismissal of the perpetrator."
In other videos posted online, event organizers are shown explaining that they only knew that someone was added last minute to the performance lineup by the production company. After hearing the lyrics being sung, an organizer says attempts were made to locate the production manager to stop the performance, only to discover they were nowhere to be found.
Though it is unknown as to whether the singer was truly Baron Cohen, the prank would not mark the first that Baron Cohen has managed to pull off.
In past events, the comedian and performance artist has dressed up as Gen. Aladeen, from The Dictator, while on the Academy Awards red carpet; knocked an elder woman in a wheelchair off the BAFTA's stage while accepting an award; pretended to be a wounded U.S. veteran to former Republican vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin and got former Vice President Dick Cheney to sign a waterboard for his Showtime series, Who is America? which featured Baron Cohen taking on multiple identities to get people whether they be politicians, celebrities or everyday people to admit to absurd things on camera.
During an interview with The Hollywood Reporter's 'Awards Chatter' podcast in 2018, Baron Cohen had stated his Showtime comedy series Who Is America? would not return for a second season. Baron Cohen had also noted that he didn't have other characters prepared should he change his mind and do another season: "It's like The Ali G Show in England — I did one season. And the idea is not to make it a Seinfeld or an SNL," he said.
Reps for Cohen did not respond to THR's request for comment. Showtime declined comment.