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Why Is Simon Cowell Skipping X Factor Auditions in Kansas?

X Factor Judges,  L.A. Reid, Demi Lovato, Britney Spears, Simon Cowell Mickshaw / FOX

Simon Cowell's bark may be bigger than his bite—but even his bark is a little subdued right now.

The X Factor judge is battling bronchitis and will not be able to make the show's Kansas auditions, which are scheduled to take place tomorrow and Saturday, a production rep confirms to E! News.

So, do L.A. Reid, Britney Spears and Demi Lovato carry on as a team of three, or does Cowell have something up his sleeve?

MORE: X Factor's Demi Lovato in a "Good Place," Says Joe Jonas

Sure enough, the crafty Brit enlisted crafty Irishman Louis Walsh—a judge on The X-Factor in the U.K. and former boy-band manager—to take his place in the Sunflower State.

E! News hears Walsh managed to grab a flight to the U.S. in the nick of time.

And while us Yanks aren't used to Cowell taking sick leave, Walsh has in the past filled in for his ailing pal on Britain's Got Talent, as well.

Cowell is currently resting up at his home in Los Angeles.

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