Ted Cruz might want to reconsider holding up Homer Simpson as a Republican icon. Earlier this week at CPAC, the Texas senator claimed the majority of the Simpson clan for Republicans, but the comment may have backfired.
“The Democrats are the party of Lisa Simpson and Republicans are happily the party of Homer, Bart, Maggie and Marge,” Cruz said in response to an interviewer who likened the current gun control debate to a “Simpsons” episode.
While smug, condescending Lisa is clearly a liberal, the political affiliation of the rest of the family is less certain. Maggie is a baby and Bart is a borderline juvenile delinquent. As one would expect of most children, neither has shown much interest in politics.
A 2016 Simpsons clip casts doubt upon Cruz’s claim about Homer and Marge as well. In the sendup of Hillary Clinton’s “3 a.m.” ad from 2008, Marge says, “I can’t make love until I’ve decided who to vote for.”
“It’s the American way,” Homer answers.
The couple then imagine an oh-dark-thirty phone call to each potential president. Bill Clinton hands the phone to Hillary, telling her, “It’s for you.”
Hillary grumpily retorts, “From now on, it’s always for me.”
Donald Trump declines the call so that he can tweet about Elizabeth Warren. When he finally answers the call, it takes a team of makeup artists, complete with a canine toupee and fake large hands, to prep him before he gets out of bed. When told that the Chinese fleet is advancing, Trump says, “Just build another wall. Yes, in the ocean, loser.”
The tag line of the ad is “paid for by Americans who are really starting to miss Obama,” a tacit admission that the creators of the show weren’t impressed by either candidate.
Marge says that her mind is made up and Homer hesitantly says, “I’m voting for Trump, right?” Marge immediately gives him the cold shoulder and Homer announces, “And that’s how I became a Democrat.”
In fact, Homer may have been a Democrat before. In a 2008 clip, Homer tries to vote for Barack Obama, but a rigged voting machine registers his votes for John McCain. Granted, this is “Treehouse of Horror XIX” which can be considered an alternate reality to the show.
In 1996, Homer also had a feud with George Herbert Walker Bush when the former president moved to Evergreen Terrace. The two engaged in a neighborhood prank war until the Bushes moved out and Gerald Ford moved in. Homer and Ford immediately hit it off, enjoying beer and nachos while they watch football.
Homer Simpson is apparently not a reliable Republican voter. In fact, Homer is the kind of person who seems oblivious to politics. He better represents the undecided and moderate voters who make up their minds on the way to the polling place. In reality, it is these voters who decide most elections. That should be a sobering thought.
Even if Homer were a reliable Republican, he isn’t the best role model for gun owners and conservatives. When Homer buys a gun for home protection (from a shop called “Bloodbath and Beyond”) he is so careless and reckless that Marge won’t let him keep it.
Cruz’s comments drew widespread ridicule from the left. Al Jean, the showrunner for “the Simpsons,” tweeted back that Cruz “could use a pacifier” and that “the way things are going even Mr. Burns is thinking of becoming a Democrat.” The response was entirely predictable considering that last year the show ran a clip of Donald Trump, again with a canine toupee, attempting to bribe Robert Mueller.
Cruz’s comments were apparently an off-the-cuff response to the interviewer, but the senator has mentioned the cartoon family on other occasions as well. If I could give Mr. Cruz some advice, I’d say, “Don’t.”
As a rule, politicians should avoid stirring up needless controversy with fictional characters. Just ask Dan Quayle about Murphy Brown.
Originally published on The Resurgent