Sitcom star Roseanne Barr announces run for U.S. president

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Roseanne Barr in 2010
Image: Leah Mark.

Roseanne Barr, best known for her role on the television sitcom Roseanne, officially announced Thursday on the The Tonight Show with Jay Leno that she will run for President of the United States in 2012.

Barr, 58, starred as the blue collar, wise-cracking mother Roseanne Conner on Roseanne from 1988 to 1997. She made national headlines in 1990 for a shrill performance of the national anthem at a San Diego Padres baseball game that then-President George H.W. Bush called a disgrace. After the conclusion of Roseanne, she hosted a short-lived talk show from 1998 to 2000, before returning to her roots as a stand-up comedienne in the HBO special Roseanne Barr: Blonde N Bitchin'.

Last month, Barr premiered in a new reality show on Lifetime called Roseanne's Nuts, which follows her life as a macadamia nut farmer in Hawaii. Two weeks ago, the show was watched by 1.6 million viewers, though last week only 785,000 tuned in. In an interview with The Star-Telegram, she admitted that the show serves as a launching pad for her presidential ambitions, arguing "I have to do a reality show in order to run for president of these United States", in allusion to former Alaska governor Sarah Palin's reality series Sarah Palin's Alaska.

During her appearance on the Tonight Show, Barr insisted that she was serious and commented that Palin's potential candidacy is "kinda what got me to thinking that I too should run for president, if she can". Barr revealed that she had created her own political party, referred to as the "Green Tea Party", which combines elements of the Green and Tea Party movements. She proclaimed that the taxpayers would be her running mate and that her first order of business would be the legalization of marijuana.

If not invited to the presidential debates, Barr joked that she would "photoshop" herself in.