With its lengthy production process denying The Simpsons the joy of commenting on the 2012 presidential election in real time like the living cartoons of 30 Rock, the showmakes up for the fact that it won’t be airing a new episode this Sunday by allowing C. Montgomery Burns to put in a last-ditch pitch for a Mitt Romney presidency. Appearing on behalf of the Springfield Republican Party (we’ll assume he has the full backing of Rich Texan, Birch Barlow, Count Dracula, and the like) Mr. Burns puts in a good word for Romney in true late-period Simpsons style: By riffing on a joke the rest of the world stopped making a few months ago—the wild ride given to the Romneys’ Irish setter, Seamus. Fresher gags are sprinkled throughout the clip (a binder marked “women,” for instance), an indication that, though full-length Simpsons installments tend to fall behind the cultural curve these days, the show (or at least Harry Shearer) can still churn political gaffes into topical barbs. And isn’t that just the teensiest, tiniest bit excellent?