“Goodbye to You” isn’t meant to be a celebratory song. The 2000 Michelle Branch hit has been used regularly since its release to bring the mood down a little bit on shows ranging from Buffy the Vampire Slayer to The Hills. But on the occasion of Ted Cruz terminating his presidential bid, Branch herself turned the song into a commemoration of the fact that one of the most-hated men in politics was scurrying back home with his tail tucked between his legs.
The Full Frontal With Samantha Bee performance is full of barbs about Cruz’s odd soup-hoarding story, the conspiracy theories surrounding his family and that time he elbowed his wife in the face, but nothing stings worse than the first chorus.
“Goodbye, Ted Cruz,” Branch sings, “won’t miss your creepy lizard face on the news.”
Reminiscent of his entire campaign, John Kasich leaving the race is relegated to an afterthought of a line at the end of the song. We’d be completely on-board with this joyous send-up of two doomed campaigns if it didn’t mean that Donald Trump is currently running unopposed on the Republican side of the ballot.
No reworking of a tender-hearted hit from the turn of the century could make that fact any less frightening. When we close our eyes, it’s Trump’s America we see. Michelle Branch is just universal in that way.