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Monday, September 10, 2012

Politics and the Pizza Man


On Sunday, Scott Van Duzer became the Obama campaign's favorite Republican bench-pressing pizza-parlor owner when he lifted President Obama off the floor during a surprise hug in his Florida restaurant. The image made the front pages of newspapers around the country and immediately whizzed around the Internet.

But on Monday, Mr. Van Duzer found that fame can be a complicated proposition. The Yelp profile page for his pizza place, which had only two reviews before Monday (“Love the Pizza, wings, subs and the best strombolie [sic] in town”) was suddenly inundated with hundreds of reviews, making it perhaps the most politically charged pizza review board around.

“Politics aside. I hate this pla ce is gonna get any kind of publicity. The pizza is terrible and greasy. NOTHING like NY,” wrote Smith K. of Knoxville, Tenn.

But others quickly came to the defense of Mr. Van Duzer and his pizza. “All in all, I recommend the ham and pineapple pizza to any pizza eater earning less than $500,000 per year who likes tax cuts, less war, an end to torture, and dead terrorist kingpins,” wrote Dennis J. of Milton, Ontario.

By the end of the day, sentiment was running overwhelmingly in favor of Mr. Van Duzer's pizza and his politics, with many nevertheless saying the two should never mix. “Pizza is Pizza and one should be judged on how good the crust is and not your political stance,” wrote Rob S. of San Francisco.