Homer Votes Republican, But Regrets It

Brow Beat
Slate's Culture Blog
Sept. 21 2012 2:32 PM

The Simpsons Gets Political

Homer Votes (better) 2012
A still from "Homer Votes 2012"

Despite the disastrous 47 percent remarks, it appears Mitt Romney’s strategy to ensnare disillusioned former Obama supporters has saved his candidacy—at least on The Simpsons. An everyman “40-year-old white guy who didn’t go to college and gets all his news from monitors at gas stations,” Homer votes Republican in the latest promotional video advertising The Simpson’s 24th season before its premiere on September 30.

Back in 2008, Homer Simpson attempted (unsuccessfully) to vote for Obama: in that case, the newfangled touch-screen voting machine thwarted him into voting six times for McCain. The machine, who named McCain “president” as Homer struggled with it, then revealed an interior vacuum that sucked Homer into a whirling vortex. “This doesn’t happen in America! Maybe Ohio, but not in America!” he screamed.

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While that segment reflected, however lightheartedly, concerns about electronic voting machines, this new bit of satire feels more politically pointed. As he walks down the street, Homer passes an Obama sign that reads “Keep Hoping” and a Romney sign that reads “I Have a House in Your State.” At the polling station, Springfield’s Rich Texan demands a photo ID, espousing a controversial and decidedly Republican policy. Homer decides not to vote for Obama, saying, “I already have one wife telling me to eat healthy,” and expressing his disappointment with the absence of “death panels.” As for Romney, “I hear he wears magic underpants. I expect the leader of the free world to go commando.” Recalling, however, that Romney “did invent Obamacare,” Homer casts a vote in favor of the Republican candidate.

The machine subsequently displays Romney’s tax returns, bringing up one of the sorest spots for the Romney campaign—and allowing the Simpsons writers to make one more Mormon joke. (The forms reveal that the candidate has six wives, all named Ann.)

One gets the sense that the Simpsons writers really don’t like Mitt Romney. Or maybe they’re rejecting on principle any candidate supported by Fox News.