Ted Cruz and the best public readings of ‘Green Eggs and Ham’

September 25, 2013

Jimmy Stewart’s Jefferson Smith had the Constitution. Louisiana Sen. Huey Long favored oyster recipes. And Texas lawmaker Wendy Davis? Emotional stories from women who support the right to abortion.

All of these people — fictional in the case of Mr. Smith — relied on reading material to get them through filibusters. During his on-going talk, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Tex.) chose to read the classic “Green Eggs and Ham,” to entertain his audience while attacking President Obama’s health care law.

The freshman senator said the work from Dr. Seuss is a favorite, though he doesn’t get a chance to read it much because his daughters don’t share his preference.

Having already spoken for nearly five hours, Cruz made a solid case against those eggs. We truly believed there for a minute he would not, could not eat them. Not even in a box.

The tale of Theodor Geisel’s Sam I Am has a long history of public readings. We took a moment to listen to a few past presentations to see how the senator’s stacked-up.

The children’s book is a bit of a White House Easter egg hunt tradition. President Obama was even roped into the gig in 2010, though his voice came across a little edgy and agitated. We get it! No green eggs! Sasha and Malia could barely watch. We’re with you, girls.

Olympic speed skater Apolo Ohno took over duties in 2013 with a bit more flare and ease.

Tim Tebow took up the cause for Book It!, a reading incentive program in coordination with Pizza Hut. The football star wins the prize for most uncomfortable. He looked haunted from bad childhood memories of reading out loud in elementary school. Relax, Tim, its only 500 words. Where’s Morgan Freeman when you need him?

The winner of this category is — unquestionably — Jesse Jackson in 1991. The reverend, who appeared on Saturday Night Live’s Weekend Update to honor the recently deceased Dr. Seuss, gave the reading all the gravitas of a Christmas Sunday sermon.

 

 

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