Taking Political Shots

One local watering hole in Ohio is rewarding voters with the only thing that makes politics bearable: shots!

Big Billy Bob Jim’s BBQ Pit in Columbus is selling candidate themed shots for every person that comes in to the restaurant wearing the quintessential “I Voted” stickers all day as a promotion to get people in the swing state to get out and vote Tuesday November 6th.

restaurateur and namesake, William “Billy Bob” Jim has been doing this for the last forty years with his election day blitzer.

“Every presidential election I set my crack bar staff to create a specialty shot for each of the candidates. It’s actually a pretty serious competition that comes with a trophy.” Says Billy Bob with pride.

This year’s winner of the employee competition was Michelle Stephens. She designed two drinks for patrons to come and a shoot. This year’s drinks? The Obama Slammer and the Romnesiac.

Michelle describes her inspiration: “Well, the Obama Slammer is basically an Alabama Slammer. Instead of SoCo we use dark rum and instead of sweet and sour we just use limes for the sour. Get it? Dark? And we’re all a little sour on him? OK, and the Romnesiac is basically a Brain Eraser. We use the Goldschlager cause it’s got gold, use the Kahlua and we make sure to use vanilla vodka ‘cause he’s so boring. Then we just serve it with a coke back. Get it, because of how he knows the Coke brothers? Well, I thought it was clever.”

Voters are asked to choose the shot that corresponds with the candidate for whom they voted. That’s what they get to drink for just $1 all day. Along with the one-of-a-kind drinks the BBQ pit offers a happy hour from open to close and complete campaign coverage on the TV’s in the bar.

The event has come with it’s fair share of problems in the past the Billy Bob is prepared for. In the past there have been numerous bar fights, one stabbing; and on one occasion, some well-written legislature that still hangs famed behind the bar. The series of cocktail napkins behind glass outline the idea that congressional salaries should be replaced by an incentive program to avoid inactivity and limit feet-dragging in voting on bills up for a vote.

Billy Bob is expecting some 900 people to pass through the bar for their particular political shot on the day. He expects to also sell nearly 5,000 of his famous pulled pork sliders to patrons throughout the evening as a new president is declared.

“Well, here at the Pit we wanna turn a potentially boring and infuriating day in to something fun. I wanna reward people who exercise their rights to vote. Why does this have to be boring? I wanna throw a party. You can’t spell democratic and republican party without ‘party,’ right?”

In addition to drinks and food, the Pit offers patrons the chance to enter their local voting pool. Patrons decide whether any number of measures will pass or fail. The winner who gets the most guesses correct gets a t-shirt, a gift card, and their picture behind the bar as “Big Billy Bob Jim’s resident asshole you don’t want to start a conversation with.”


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