Social media users were puzzled Thursday by Sen. Ted Cruz’s attempt to fit the characters on the animated comedy “The Simpsons” into a modern political paradigm.
Speaking at the Conservative Political Action Conference, the Texas Republican , who is a self-professed “Simpsons” fan, was asked about “The Cartridge Family,” a 1997 episode in which father Homer Simpson buys a gun and proceeds to act so irresponsibly with it that he endangers his family and is ultimately kicked out of a local National Rifle Association meeting.
Moderator Ben Domenech brought up a scene in which Homer and daughter Lisa debate the Second Amendment, with Homer insisting it is a constitutional right that keeps the King of England from messing with you and Lisa dismissing it as a relic of the Revolutionary era.
"The Democrats are the party of Lisa Simpson," Cruz replied. "And Republicans are happily the party of Homer, Bart, Maggie and Marge."
Those familiar with “Simpsons” continuity profoundly disagreed, including current showrunner Al Jean.
“Ted Cruz says Maggie Simpson would vote for him,” he tweeted. “I think Ted's the one who could use a pacifier in his mouth.”
Former showrunner Bill Oakley was similarly harsh.
So many things wrong with this:— 🇺🇸Bill Oakley🇺🇸 (@thatbilloakley) February 22, 2018
1) Maggie = No way
2) Bart = Libertarian
3) Marge = Well known fan of Jimmy Carter and John Anderson
4) Homer = He may be Republican because the joke with Homer, as everyone knows, is that he is poorly-informed and reactionary in the extreme https://t.co/jdspX4b7gq
“He may be Republican because the joke with Homer, as everyone knows, is that he is poorly-informed and reactionary in the extreme,” he wrote.
In the “Cartridge Family” episode, Homer complains about a five-day waiting period to buy a gun, saying, “But I’m angry now.” He then grows frustrated as he sees many people and things he would like to shoot while he waits, including his neighbor.
Homer mishandles the gun repeatedly and Marge leaves the house with their children after son Bart finds the gun hidden in the refrigerator and nearly shoots his friend. NRA members are later horrified to see Homer use the firearm to do things like opening beer cans and turning off the television.
He is, to say the least, not a gun owner that either party would be eager to claim as its own.
In addition to their issues with that particular episode, fans pointed to other problems with Cruz’s “Homer as Republican” theory, not the least of which was his fistfight with former President George H.W. Bush.
Many did note, however, that President Lisa Simpson finds herself having to clean up President Trump’s budget crisis on one episode set in the future, suggesting she is indeed a Democrat.