News & Politics

No Longer Naked Cowboy Announces 2012 Bid for President

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“America, you can count on me to be conservative through and through!” announced an unusually clothed Robert Burck in Times Square today. Burck, in case somehow you don’t know, is better known as the Times Square tourist fixture “The Naked Cowboy” — a gig for which he dons only a cowboy hat, briefs, and boots. But beneath that exterior, he’s interested in eliminating the death tax and implementing stricter immigration policy.

And he is, as we hypothesized, aligning himself with the right-wing nutbaggers among us. “I am not a Republican, I am not a Democrat, I am an American,” he said. “It is my goal and intention to lead the Tea Party to the office of the President of the United States of America.”

Burck bills himself as “an American success story,” which may be true, but he doesn’t plan to run his campaign by marketing himself as a tourist attraction. He ditched his long locks for a more serious crop and was dressed in a tailored suit for the announcement, during which he also mentioned his degree in political science and his legacy as “the son of a career politician” (or, as per The New Yorker, a semi-retired geology enthusiast). He also talked up his “extensive work with the Times Square Alliance that has made Times Square the most popular tourist destination in the world.”

So what’s the Naked Cowboy platform? Burck proposed a hiring freeze in all government agencies and a goal of reducing the federal workforce by 40 percent. He also wants to mandate term limits for all government positions (Bloomberg wouldn’t approve) and stressed conservative ideology 101, i.e., “cutting the death tax,” “balancing the budget,” and trying to “end all bans on offshore drilling” so that “America’s enormous bounty of natural resources be made to obey the law of supply and demand.” Er, whatever that means.

Still, despite the new haircut, it sounds like we’d be calling him President Naked Cowboy. He delivered his speech in front of a podium that read “Naked Cowboy For President” along with ads for KDF Car Wraps (the Naked Cowboy’s “exclusive print provider“).

Burck claims he’s “not a Republican” — although he is a registered Republican in Cincinnati.

As a Times Square fixture, Burck has apparently had his fill of the foreign element — he said that “careless immigration policies are allowing millions of foreigners to infiltrate this country,” and that he’ll somehow “make English the universal tongue through and through.” Then we saw him give an interview in Spanish for a Spanish news organization. This guy is complex!

Following the press conference, Burck hosted a midday beer and Naked Cowboy oyster snack at the Pourhouse. Still buoyed by quotes like, “America, this country is our last hope for freedom; my message to you is to fight for it,” we declined and asked people around Times Square what they thought of the possible POTUS.

Melissa Knepp, a fan of nudism visiting from Michigan, said, “I’d vote for him, he’s a symbol! A symbol of American freedom! He’s free to make whatever kind of music he wants, and most importantly, he’s naked!” (Technically, that’s incorrect.) She added, “If he’s naked, he’s gonna get my vote,” and “Jerry Springer was mayor once and no one says boo to him!”

Miranda Rovetto, a Times Square performer who hula-hoops in a glittery miniskirt and tube top, was not so willing to support her fellow showman. She said, “I’m not really into politics. I’m really not into conservative ideas though. I like the idea of him being president, though, it really just depends on his views.”

When asked what would happen if “no one voted for him,” Burck replied, “If I don’t get one vote but I’ve told America what my concerns are, I’ve done my job.”

Consider that done; now, you can go back to singing in your underwear.

[@Mylestanzer] [mylestanzer@gmail.com]

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