Meet the Artist Behind This Outrageous Image of Ronald Reagan Riding a Dinosaur That Was Made Famous on the US Senate Floor This Week

When New York State Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez introduced her ambitious Green New Deal last month, it was met with arguments from both sides of the aisle. But none of them were as inspired as that of Republican Senator Mike Lee of Utah.

Earlier this week, Lee spoke at a session prior to the Senate’s procedural vote on Ocasio-Cortez’s proposal, soberly declaring: “I rise today to consider the Green New Deal with the seriousness it deserves.” He then pulled out an image former President Ronald Reagan shooting a machine atop a Velociraptor holding a torn American flag and proceeded to put on a clinic in ekphrasis.

“This is, of course, a picture of former president Ronald Reagan, naturally firing a machine gun while riding on the back of a dinosaur,” Senator Lee explained. “You’ll notice a couple of important features here. First of all, the rocket launcher that’s strapped to President Reagan’s back. And then the stirring, unmistakable patriotism of the velociraptor holding up a tattered American flag—a symbol of all it means to be an American.”

Jason Heuser, <i>The Dubya</i> (2015). Courtesy of the artist.

Jason Heuser, The Dubya (2015). Courtesy of the artist.

The brain behind this image is San Francisco-based artist Jason Heuser, who sells his work on Etsy under the name SharpwriterThe Reagan print is just one of many “badass” presidential portraits the artist has produced. There’s also President George W. Bush riding a flying shark, Dr. Strangelove-style; Richard Nixon fighting a saber-toothed tiger;” and Donald Trump riding a unicorn with and Kim Jung Un.

To his credit, Sharpwriter doesn’t just work with Republicans. Don’t forget about cyborg Bernie Sanders (“Cybernie”) and “Bill Clinton the Lady Killer” (who, of course, has an alligator sidekick and sax strapped to his back). There’s also a particularly sophisticated rendering of FDR as a wheelchair transformer fighting an alien.

Jason Heuser, <i>Cybernie 2020</i>. Courtesy of the artist.

Jason Heuser, Cybernie 2020. Courtesy of the artist.

Heuser’s chosen medium? “Photoshopped,” his Etsy page reads. His works are available in a number of different sizes and formats, from small playing cards to full 36-inch, man-cave-ready posters—and they’re pretty affordable (around $25 to 80), as far as art like this goes.  

See more of Heuser’s creations here.

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