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Larry David and Bernie Sanders Are Apparently Distant Relatives

The comedian, who impersonated the senator on "SNL" during the 2016 election, said he learned about the connection while filming an episode of a PBS series.
Comedian Larry David, left, and Sen. Bernie Sanders
Comedian Larry David, left, and Sen. Bernie SandersAP; Reuters

At a Democratic candidates forum in November 2015, Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vermont, raised the most urgent question in American politics: Is he really Larry David?

The answer, most likely, is no. But the former presidential candidate and the "Curb Your Enthusiasm" star are apparently distantly related.

Sanders is a "third cousin or something," David told reporters at a Television Critics Association event on Wednesday. The comedian, who impersonated the senator on "Saturday Night Live" during the 2016 election, said he learned about the genealogical connection while filming an upcoming episode of the PBS series "Finding Your Roots."

"I was very happy about that," David said, according to Variety. "I thought there must have been some connection."

David, who scored an Emmy nomination for the spot-on impression of his fellow Brooklyn native on "SNL," explained how he came to play the part.

“This Bernie Sanders thing,” David told reporters, according to Variety. “During the first debate between Bernie and Hillary, ["SNL" creator] Lorne Michaels got emails and calls during the debate, saying that I should be doing Bernie Sanders.”

That's when Hollywood agent Ari Emanuel, the inspiration for Jeremy Piven's character on "Entourage," stepped in to help close the deal.

"Ari Emanuel called me up and said, 'What did you think?'' And every time I watched Bernie Sanders, I would repeat everything that he said, because I know that I can talk like that. So I started talking to Ari, the agent, I started talking to him like Bernie.”

The rest is television history.

Sanders even appeared with David in a February 2016 sketch. The "Seinfeld" creator played an aristocratic gentleman on a sinking ship who debates the merits of democratic socialism with the senator's rumpled commoner.

"Curb Your Enthusiasm," David's semi-autobiographical sitcom, returns to HBO in October.

Sanders did not immediately respond to news reports about his expanded family tree.