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The shelves were bare, but this congressman wanted lasagna noodles

Rep. Ken Buck promised his daughter a lasagna for her birthday

Ken Buck, center, went to the store over the weekend and couldn’t find any lasagna noodles.
Ken Buck, center, went to the store over the weekend and couldn’t find any lasagna noodles. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

He wanted lasagna noodles, he couldn’t find lasagna noodles, he offered toilet paper in exchange for lasagna noodles, and then he told Democrats to stay away from both his guns and his lasagna noodles.

That’s how things are going for Rep. Ken Buck so far, how are they going for you?

The Colorado Republican discovered that Lysol wipes and hand sanitizer aren’t the only items in short supply at grocery stores right now.

“I promised my daughter lasagna for her birthday,” the congressman wrote Sunday on Instagram. “I’ve got everything but the lasagna noodles and the stores are all sold out.”

Buck offered two rolls of toilet paper (and $20) in exchange for the flat pasta, while commenters chimed in with helpful kitchen recommendations full of can-do spirit. Eggplant could work, or maybe zucchini. 

“I know this is sacrilegious for Italians, but use tortillas instead,” suggested one user.

The tips skewed vegetarian, but this dish was far from meatless. Buck posted a photo of the non-noodle ingredients — including packs of ground beef, sausage links, ricotta and Tillamook mozzarella — that was enough to whet the appetite of any scrolling carnivore.

Next he posted images of empty grocery store shelves to document his unsuccessful quest. Penne pasta was available, but this was lasagna, darn it.

Offers trickled in, but in the end, Buck didn’t have to source his noodles from the pantries of his constituents. Instead, he grabbed “one of the last” boxes of noodles at Walmart, according to his spokeswoman.

He celebrated his victory with a second Instagram post in which he proudly holds up the assembled lasagna, gleaming in a foil pan. “While you’re at it Joe, why don’t you come and try to take this also,” he wrote, adding a “rolling on the floor laughing” emoji.

It was a callback to a moment from more innocent times (in other words, earlier this month), when Buck went viral with a video criticizing Joe Biden’s stances on gun control and daring the presidential hopeful to take away his guns. “Why don’t you swing by my office in Washington, D.C. and start with this one?” Buck said, clutching an American flag-themed AR-15 that usually hangs on his office wall. 

That same week, Buck was one of just two House members to vote against $8.3 billion in emergency spending to combat the coronavirus. At the time the virus was just beginning to disrupt daily life in America. Now shoppers are clearing out shelves, as the congressman discovered over the weekend, and the buying spree extends to both items he referenced: noodles, yes, but also firearms, with some gun shops reporting long lines and increased sales

As for the lasagna, it made it to its intended recipient, Buck’s adult daughter Kaitlin.

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