Duck Dynasty‘s Phil Robertson is going to keynote the Republican Leadership Conference in New Orleans tomorrow:

Robertson will talk to the annual confab in the evening of its opening day, the conference announced Tuesday. Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal (R) and Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) are among the people also scheduled to speak Thursday evening at the conference in New Orleans, Louisiana.

Y’all know I like the Duck Dynastists, and I think Phil Robertson got a raw deal when he was trashed earlier this year (for example). Still, I wonder what the GOP is trying to accomplish by giving the Duck Commander the prime spot in its big event. Is putting a reality TV celebrity, one known for being extremely polarizing in the culture war, in that slot really the sign of a party that’s looking outside of its own navel? Again, I say that as somebody who is all for the Duck guys, but also as someone who doesn’t understand why the Republican Party thinks it can grow itself by identifying itself so strongly with the South and white Southern culture.

It’s hard to get more iconic of the rural Bible Belt South than the Duck Commander. Hey, I live in the rural South, and I’m glad I do. But this is a big country.