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Meet the ‘Progressive Liberal,’ the Wrestling Villain Riling Up Red State America

A pro wrestler on a circuit in Kentucky and West Virginia has developed the perfect villain character to get under the fans’ skin.

Meet Dan Richards (real name Daniel Harnsberger), better known to his many haters as “The Progressive Liberal.” Deadspin profiled Richards Tuesday, delving deep into a character he created in 2015, which has riled up audiences in two states President Donald Trump carried with more than 60 percent of the vote.

The character antagonizes audiences by playing to a staunch progressive stereotype. He wears shirts that say “Not My President.” He constantly sings the praises of Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders. And he lectures his audience in the most condescending manner imaginable.

“You people need to be reprogrammed,” The Progressive Liberal said (in character) in a video interview. “You continually vote against your own interests. You put people in Congress and the White House that aren’t going to help you. They’re not going to bring your jobs back.”

The character, and Harnsberger’s portrayal, has elicited some true venom from fans, and even a few death threats. According to Deadspin, one fan said if “that f*cking liberal” appeared at another show, he’d bring his gun.

The character works, according to Harnsberger, because it’s pretty true to who he is.

“It’s not that much of a stretch,” Harnsberger told Deadspin.

Oh, and his finishing move? It’s called the liberal agenda.

Watch above, via YouTube.

[featured image via screengrab]

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Follow Joe DePaolo (@joe_depaolo) on Twitter

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