It Has Come To This: O’Donnell Family Straightens Out Father’s Bozo The Clown Career

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Christine O’Donnell’s campaign is facing yet another set of questions about her background, and this time it’s on a really weird line of discussion — whether her father was Philadelphia’s local Bozo the Clown. Seriously.

As Mark Leibovich at the New York Times reports, the O’Donnell family’s past claims that her father Daniel O’Donnell had worked as Bozo sparked an uprising of online commenters who insisted that no, Daniel O’Donnell was not listed on Wikipedia as having been one of the many regionally licensed Bozo the Clown TV hosts.

[TPM SLIDESHOW: Christine O’Donnell: Anti-Masturbation Crusader. Witchcraft Dabbler. Republican Senate Nominee.]

But now Leibovich has sorted things out — Daniel O’Donnell was an occasional understudy Bozo, not a full-time holder of the Bozo mantle. From their phone conversation:

“Who told you I was Bozo?” he wanted to know.

“Your son,” I said, at which point he confirmed that yes, he was Bozo, but not an official, full-time certified Bozo, more of a part-time Bozo.

“To be an official Bozo, you had to go to a special school in Texas,” explained Mr. O’Donnell. He never did. Instead, he was asked to fill-in for the official Bozos whenever they would have to travel out of the Philadelphia area for acting gigs.

“They would leave, I would come in and work for two or three weeks, whatever, until the regular Bozo came back,” Mr. O’Donnell said. “I was the fill-in Bozo.”

The TPM Poll Average of the Delaware Senate race has the former part-time Bozo’s daughter Christine O’Donnell — who many comedians and bloggers have depicted as something of a bozo herself — trailing Democratic nominee Chris Coons by 55.0%-39.6%.

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