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Screenshot from FX
“We’re broke!”

‘The Simpsons’ predicted a Donald Trump presidency 16 years ago

The Simpsons has been making audiences laugh since 1989, but a forward-looking episode from 2000 might make some fans cringe. An episode of the beloved American sitcom that aired almost exactly 16 years ago—on March 19, 2000—features Donald Trump as president of the United States, presiding over a broken economy.

In the episode, Bart Simpson gets a glimpse of his future only to find that he’s pretty much a loser, while his sister Lisa has become the president of the US. She calls a meeting in the Oval Office to assess the damage done by her predecessor, Trump; an advisor holds up an plummeting line chart and explains, “We’re broke!”

Jokes aside, the creators say the subplot should serve as a wake-up call for viewers. “It was a warning to America,” one of the writers, Dan Greaney, told the Hollywood Reporter. The idea of a Trump presidency, he added, came about when the writers needed to invent a world in which “everything went as bad as it possibly could,” and Lisa would be faced with insurmountable problems in her own presidency.

Hence: Trump. Watch the scene starting at 2:12 in the video above.

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