Mexican Politician Accused of Plagiarizing a Frank Underwood Speech From ‘House of Cards’

Lead Photo: Art by Alan López for Remezcla
Art by Alan López for Remezcla
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When the former mayor of Tlaxcala looked to deliver a message to Mexicans, he decided channeling House of Cards‘s Frank Underwood (Kevin Spacey) was the best course of action. In a short video posted to Facebook on Tuesday, Miguel Ángel Covarrubias Cervantes delivers almost the exact same speech that Spacey gave last year to promote the fourth season of the Netflix political drama.

In a dark, almost ominous room, Covarrubias states: “They say we get the government we deserve. And I believe Mexico deserves something greater, a person who’s not afraid to look you in the eyes and tell you what they believe. I believe in putting people first. I believe in better laws for citizens. I believe in opening doors and breaking paradigms. How many times have they told you that you can’t? They’ve criticized me, and nevertheless, I’ve earned your trust. I’m willing to work with whomever necessary to accomplish what we want. And I want, from this moment on, for you and I to do something great. This chapter ends today, and I’m sure what’s to come will be better. They say we get the government we deserve. The past has brought us where we are now, and the now is the beginning of this great story.”

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And if you can’t recall Underwood’s words or you’ve never heard them, here’s what the villainous character said: “They say we get the leaders we deserve. Well, here’s what I think America deserves. A leader who is not afraid to look you in the eye. Tell you what he believes. I believe in putting people first. I believe in putting America back on track. I believe in opening doors. And I’m willing to work with both sides so that we all get what we want. I’m a humble man. I’ve never forgotten where I come from. I’ve taken my licks. And I’ve never taken your support for granted. I believe in pointing people in the right direction. But in the end, we should be free to make our own decisions. They say we get the leaders we deserve. I think America deserves Frank Underwood. And in your heart, you know I’m right.”

As a result, the Mexican politician has earned nicknames like Miguel Underwood, Frank Underwood de Tlaxcala, and the Mexican Frank Underwood. At the same time, people accuse him of plagiarizing.

Miguel Ángel denies that he plagiarized. Instead, he said, it was supposed to be obvious that the video referenced House of Cards. Which then begs the question: Why would you purposely embody such a conniving character? “My team and I decided to venture out with this project, which has generated much hope and controversy, and which has accomplished its goal: to draw attention,” he said, according to Animal Politico.

That’s certainly one way to explain his decision. But whether or not you buy it, it’s hard to deny that Netflix handled the situation excellently. With the help of Doug Stamper (Michael Kelly), they told him that “imitation isn’t always the best form of flattery.”