The fast food restaurant chain Hardee’s took to social media to capitalise on its newfound notoriety after My Pillow CEO and ardent Donald Trump supporter Mike Lindell claimed that the FBI seized his cell phone at a Hardee’s in southern Minnesota on Tuesday.
“Now that you know we exist… you should really try our pillowy biscuits,” Hardee’s tweeted early on Wednesday morning.
Contacted by Insider for a reaction to the tweet, Mr Lindell replied to the chain’s missive with: “Funny!” He later confirmed to the publication that FBI officials cornered him at a Hardee’s in his hometown of Mankato, Minnesota and questioned him before taking his cell phone.
“Cars pulled up in front of us, to the side of us, and behind us and I said those are either bad guys or the FBI,” Mr Lindell said Tuesday night on the Lindell Report. “Well, it turns out they were the FBI.”
Mr Lindell said he was at the restaurant on his way back from a hunting trip in Iowa and ordered a mushroom swiss cheeseburger and a chocolate shake.
He also said in a video posted to social media on Tuesday that he was told not to reveal that the search had happened but was choosing to disregard that directive. In a statement to The Daily Beast, an FBI spokesperson confirmed that “the FBI was at that location executing a search warrant authorized by a federal judge.”
The temporary loss of the cell phone seems to be especially grievous to Mr Lindell, who said that he does not own a computer.
“I go, ‘No. My whole company — I run five companies off that. I don’t have a computer,’” Lindell told Insider. “My hearing aids run off this! Everything runs off my phone!”
Per a copy of the subpoena shared by Mr Lindell, the FBI is investigating him for any possible involvement in tampering with voting machines used in the 2020 presidential election. Mr Lindell has for the better part of two years been launching efforts to overturn the result of the election, which he baselessly believes was marred by voter fraud and illegitimately stolen from Mr Trump.
Despite his best efforts, Mr Lindell has not made any significant headway in proving his claims of fraud. He is now, however, another visible member of Mr Trump’s political circle to be implicated in a major federal investigation. Mr Trump was none too happy about the news, claiming on Truth Social that the raid showed that “The majesty of the United States is gone.”
For Hardee’s, a chain with locations in 31 states primarily concentrated in the midwest and southern states, the location of the FBI raid — and Mr Lindell’s volubility about it — represents a significant amount of attention and free media. Hardee’s has two locations in Mankato, both of which are open today.