Minnesota pillow salesman Mike Lindell’s busy weekend in the White House orbit

By: - January 17, 2021 9:17 am

Photo courtesy of Mike Lindell.

Mike Lindell, the south metro pillow salesman, continued his rocketing rise to national prominence — and in many quarters, infamy — this weekend. The ally of President Donald Trump and potential 2022 candidate for Minnesota governor continues to make a last-ditch effort to overturn the 2020 election to keep Trump in power.

As first reported by Michael Brodkorb, Lindell’s company MyPillow was offering discounts for customers who entered the code QAnon, which is the name for the broad internet conspiracy theory that Trump is saving the world from the power elite, who are said to be a cabal of Satan-worshipping pedophiles. The FBI, however, calls them “conspiracy theory-driven domestic extremists,” and many people who ransacked the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6 are adherents of the dark fantasy.

The discount: $45, perhaps not a coincidence given Lindell’s admiration for Trump, the 45th president.

(MyPillow discounts heavily, so lots of words work as discount codes, including “Minnesota” and “Lindell,” although plenty of words don’t work, Bring Me The News reported.)

The company ended the QAnon discount hours after Broadkorb first reported it, although “Q” was still working.

The QAnon discount news came just after a Washington Post photographer captured an image of Lindell’s notes as he headed into a meeting at the White House.

The notes, though obscured, seemed to show a plan for Trump to move around administration officials and use the military if need be to remain in power, as the Post‘s Philip Bump reported.

People in the White House were skeptical and, in one case, displeased with Lindell’s behavior during his visit, according to Maggie Haberman of the New York Times.

“Officials said Lindell spoke sharply to one of (White House Counsel Pat) Cipollone’s assistants after he was brought upstairs; Cipollone told him he wouldn’t speak to him until Lindell apologized to her.”

In September, Republican Party of Minnesota Chair Jennifer Carnahan made the unusual move of seeming to endorse Lindell in the event he runs for in for governor. Republicans, she said, “are going to make him our next governor.”

GOP political operatives, however, are increasingly concerned that the eccentric incidents involving Lindell do not bode well should he be the party’s nominee.

Longtime GOP operative Gina Countryman called him “toxic.”

“We can do better,” she tweeted, noting that Gov. Tim Walz’s campaign is already using Lindell as a fundraising tool.

Our stories may be republished online or in print under Creative Commons license CC BY-NC-ND 4.0. We ask that you edit only for style or to shorten, provide proper attribution and link to our web site. Please see our republishing guidelines for use of photos and graphics.

J. Patrick Coolican
J. Patrick Coolican

J. Patrick Coolican is Editor-in-Chief of Minnesota Reformer. Previously, he was a Capitol reporter for the Minneapolis Star Tribune for five years, after a Knight-Wallace Fellowship at the University of Michigan and time at the Las Vegas Sun, Seattle Times and a few other stops along the way. He lives in St. Paul with his wife and two young children