Ted Cruz auditions for ‘The Simpsons’: ‘He’s not getting the part,’ says producer

Sen. Ted Cruz has his eyes on one of the most important jobs in the country: replacing Harry Shearer on “The Simpsons.”

In a video for Buzzfeed released Tuesday, Cruz -- who, not coincidentally, is also running for president -- showed off his impressions of characters including Lisa and Homer Simpson, Kang, Mr. Burns and Ned Flanders (the latter two formerly voiced by Shearer).

Cruz, a Republican, wrapped up with a self-deprecating jab: “I have been told many times I have a face for radio and I have a face for animation.”


It was perhaps a surprising turn by Cruz, a politician whose sense of humor has been questioned in at least one media report.

“To, I think, the slight discomfort of his staff, [Cruz] loves to do impressions,” said Buzzfeed editor-in-chief Ben Smith. He explained that political video producer Emily Anderson pitched the idea for the “audition tape” to Cruz, who quickly agreed.

“He thought it was a wonderful idea,” said campaign spokesman Rick Tyler, who described his boss as a “lifelong ‘Simpsons’ fan.”

“He’s a little bit corny sometimes,” added Tyler, “but he’s funny.”

Cruz wouldn’t be the first politician to appear on “The Simpsons.” Tony Blair and Rudy Giuliani have both starred as themselves on the long-running animated show.

So how does Cruz poll with the constituency that matters the most? Alas, not that well.

“He didn’t ask permission, we don’t endorse a specific candidate and probably most disappointing for him he’s not getting the part,” said Al Jean, executive producer of “The Simpsons” in a statement to The Times.

Sorry, Ted. There’s always the Senate.


For the record

July 1, 10:20 a.m.: A previous version of this post said the Ted Cruz video was released Wednesday. It was released Tuesday.


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