- “Vote Quimby!”
- ―Joe Quimby's catchphrase
Joseph Fitzgerald O'Malley Fitzpatrick O'Donnell The Edge "Diamond Joe" Quimby Jr., better known as Mayor Quimby is the Mayor of Springfield, Springfield's State. He appears as a slick, opportunistic politician whose chief priorities seem to be keeping himself in office, womanizing, and various other forms of corruption, including embezzling tax money, taking bribes from Fat Tony, the local Mafia Don, and giving monthly kickbacks to the equally corrupt Chief Wiggum. The seal on the wall of his office reads "Corruptus in Extremis," which is Latin for "corrupt in the extreme." He speaks with a peculiar stutter.
BiographyDespite being mayor for such a long time (having at least six terms under his belt according to Birch Barlow), Quimby does not know or care much about his city, often privately (or even publicly) showing his outright contempt for Springfield's citizens. He frequently takes overseas vacations, which take him out of town for extended periods of time, leading to the headline "Mayor Visits City" in the Springfield Shopper. He once referred to Springfield as Sprungfeld at a public meeting. However, he makes frequent, albeit short, public appearances for local festivities, events, business openings, etc.
Among other corrupt behaviors he displayed while in office was his frequently accepting bribes from the mafia and other groups. His constantly accepting and securing bribes from unsavory people while in office was notorious enough that when he declared while shutting down Fat Tony's rat-milking operation that "the Mayor's office is not for sale", the reporters proceeded to laugh at him, apparently the irony of his statement not being lost on them, causing him to request and fail to have the laughter edited out. Aside from bribery, Barlow when describing him also inferred that he was also a tax cheat.
If bending the law will suit Quimby's purposes, he will likely do so. He once arranged Marge Simpson's release after she was arrested for blocking traffic on a bridge after suffering a nervous breakdown, claiming that if she went to jail, Quimby could kiss the "chick vote" goodbye meaning all the women in Springfield would hate him and no longer vote for him since Marge's reason for blocking the traffic was understandable. He also resorted to bribing witnesses when assault charges were brought against his nephew, leading Bart Simpson to observe that "the system works: just ask Claus von Bülow". He was once implied to have stolen picnic baskets. He is also willing to do corrupt things when he is confident that he would not get caught. A notable instance of this is when he funneled funds and cement mixing intended for road work to be used to create his swimming pool (which is shown as a lavish, almost Romanesque design) and maintained this secret despite rumors to it existing until Mr. X leaked the rumor onto his website and the press confirmed the rumor upon questioning Quimby after noticing him subtly telling a guard to close the ajar door to the pool.
He also smoked marijuana, with Birch Barlow apparently being familiar enough with his marijuana addiction to describe him as, among other things, a pot smoker, with Quimby also tending a cannabis plant during that time. According to Birch Barlow, he apparently was also illiterate, although Quimby claimed that he no longer was that.
Despite his vices and general self-serving use of the law, he has at times attempted to utilize the law for the greater good of Springfield, such as enacting "Code Black" to clean up Lake Springfield, as well as the (albeit largely ignored) establishing of a 75 cent toll booth in order to gain enough tax money to "de-python the town fountain." In another time, during a St. Patrick's Day, knowing how alcohol makes people violent in the city, he PROHIBITS alcoholic drinks that day in order not to be held responsible for any incident (unfortunately, the plan backfired due the participation of actual Irish Catholics and Protestants caused havoc in Springfield anyway because, without the alcohol, they were unable to forget their differences). He also at one point sacrificed television to save Springfield after Sideshow Bob threatened to detonate a nuclear bomb if they didn't end television.
His catchphrase is "Vote Quimby", which he always finds an opportunity to say, even in situations where it would be disadvantageous to identify himself, like inadvertently being caught by Homer in a motel room with his mistress.
When he was young, he was at fat camp named "Camp Flab-Away" along with Jeffery Albertson, Homer and other characters.
Quimby is also extremely unfaithful to his wife, often womanizing and having extra-marital affairs with women who aren't his wife (especially Miss Springfield). Ironically, he actually did attempt to spend quality time with his wife when his life was threatened by Fat Tony after he (albeit forced to by Homer, his bodyguard) shut down his rat milking operation when Homer tried to invite him out to avoid concerns about the mob. It is implied that he does womanizing because he wasn't happy that he married Martha Quimby, as when doing the above of insisting he wants to spend time with her, he pauses and gives a disappointed sigh before saying "wife."
ElectionsQuimby was elected Mayor of Springfield in 1986. He has been re-elected several times since, despite rather open admissions of fraud and wrongdoing. He once admitted to using taxpayer dollars to fund the murder of his enemies, but thanks to a clever use of a popular catch phrase ("I'm a bad wittle boy"), he was re-elected in a landslide, despite the implication that he still is doing so. Further evidence of his apparent political ideology, Quimby has earned himself the hatred of Springfield's small but vocal Republican elite, themselves portrayed (according to the show's writers and series creator Matt Groening) as mostly dark, ghoulish figures who meet in a castle.
When the party nominated Sideshow Bob as its mayoral candidate, Bob rigged the election, briefly deposing Quimby. He was re-instated when Bob was found guilty of fraud and imprisoned. He also survived a recall election in 2005, with no candidate in the race against him (candidates included Rainier Wolfcastle (another Schwarzenegger reference), Kent Brockman and even Homer Simpson) garnering the 5% necessary to force a recall since Homer who had the majority of votes was kicked from the election.
In "White Christmas Blues", Quimby called the Springfieldians idiots, which leads to Lenny and Carl saying "Why did we re-elect this mayor?", which occurred because the other candidate had a very long last name.
Understanding the need to adapt to modern times, Quimby implemented a series of "go green" projects. One of them, the refurbishing of the city’s famous monorail track, was disastrous, leading to him losing re-election in "The Old Blue Mayor She Ain't What She Used to Be" to Marge Simpson. After this exit from the Mayorship once again, however, Quimby became a private citizen in order to spend an unprecedented amount of time with his wife and children. Four years later, Quimby successfully ran for an open seat on city council, the same year Marge Simpson won re-election. Quimby was then appointed President of the City Council. A series of complicated scandals and gaffes then led to Marge being impeached; with Quimby next in the line of succession, he returned to the mayoral office.
In “Lisa's Wedding”, he is later seen as a taxi driver. It's implied in the episode that he was thrown out of office, and he has to try to deflect the embarrassment and shame of the event by falsifying his driver's license by claiming that his name is Mohammad Jafar.
Joe Quimby appears mostly in the cut scenes of the level Mob Rules as he shares a hot-tub and some interns with the EA Games executive in order to receive his bribe to have Grand Theft Scratchy be sold to minors. When the EA Games executive sees a senator among the mob created by Marge protesting the sale of the game outside City Hall, he takes back the bribe, forcing Quimby to ban the sale of the game.
In the game, when you reach level 20, you can build Town Hall. Upon completion, Quimby comes to stay in your town.
Behind the Laughter
Origin of name
Joe Quimby's name partly comes from NW Quimby Street in Portland, Oregon, the hometown of show creator Matt Groening. The rest of the character's name is from Portland mobster and chief of police, "Diamond" Jim Purcell.
Comparisons to the Kennedy familyThere are many things about Quimby and his family that are similar to Ted Kennedy and
the Kennedy political family such as:
- He speaks with a Boston accent, in a style most resembling that of Ted Kennedy, commonly separating words with "er" and "ah".
- He enjoys lavish wealth.
- He lives on a coastal estate (the "Quimby compound") with his family—not unlike the Kennedy Compound in Hyannisport, Massachusetts.
- Quimby is married to a woman who wears a pink suit and pillbox hat similar to one Jacqueline Kennedy made famous, whom he met while she was working in Maison Derrière. She may be also related to actor Rainier Wolfcastle, who is modeled after Arnold Schwarzenegger (husband of Ted Kennedy's niece, Maria Shriver); Wolfcastle has been spotted at Quimby family functions.
- Quimby has multiple extramarital affairs, like John F. Kennedy did.
- The Kennedy family is Irish-American and so is the Quimby family.
- The mayor's nephew, Freddy Quimby, was once tried for assault (a reference to the William Kennedy Smith rape trial) during which Mayor Quimby tried to bribe witnesses.
- Freddy's cameo in the Trash of the Titans where he is in a sex-offender registration line at City Hall may have also been a reference to the William Kennedy Smith rape incident.
- One of his many middle names is Fitzgerald, which was president John F. Kennedy's middle name. His first name, "Joseph", is most likely a reference to JFK's father, Joe Kennedy.
- In The Simpsons Road Rage, he can say "You drive worse than cousin Teddy!" if his driver is behaving chaotically. This is a reference to the Chappaquiddick Incident, where Mary Jo Kopechne, a female passenger, was killed when Ted Kennedy accidentally drove his car off a bridge.
During the USAToday.com contest to choose which Springfield would host the Simpsons Movie premiere, Ted Kennedy himself appears in a video in which he invited "Diamond Joe" Quimby to Springfield, Massachusetts, and even mocked his own oft-mocked pronunciation of the word "Chowder" (as "Chow-Dah").
In addition to the clear Kennedy connection, Quimby also has similarities with Charles Foster Kane, including having built an opera house for his girlfriend.
He is shown to be a womanizer and has cheated on his wife with many other women. In "She Used to Be My Girl", that number was revealed to be twenty-seven different women. His womanizing ways were such that, while giving then-recently hired Bodyguard Homer Simpson a pep talk on serving in a matter befitting the office of the Mayor, he ordered Homer upon seeing a busty redhead walking by to honk his horn, with Homer doing so and Quimby then giving a sex whistle to her (to her shock and disgust), as well as delaying being saved by Homer Simpson to flirt with an intern currently using the restroom from the window (as well as implying that this was how FDR met Eleanor Roosevelt) before being slapped twice. His womanizing extended even to family members, as he had his own niece act as a lover, and was only reminded of this fact when he told her to act as if she were his niece to act inconspicuous, causing him to refer to himself as an abomination in disgust.
Some of the women became pregnant and later gave birth. In "And Maggie Makes Three", Quimby is seen in the hospital with one of the women, holding their baby, as well as panicking when the nursemaid (referring to the baby's mother) suggested he let his wife hold it, the staff clearly being unaware that the woman was not actually his wife.
- Official site of Joe Quimby's 2000 presidential election campaign
- Mayored to the Mob: A Mayor Quimby Tribute