“Watched Saturday Night Live hit job on me… Media rigging election!”
As his standing in the polls has eroded in recent weeks, Donald Trump and some of his surrogates have been pushing the idea that the election will be rigged.
Part of Trump’s case is that the media is allegedly rigging the election for Hillary Clinton. Trump argues the media concocted the 10 (and counting) sexual assault accusations brought against him since a tape of him bragging about forcibly kissing and groping women was released on October 7. Despite ample evidence to the contrary, Trump also argues stories that are helpful to him (such as the Wikileaks hacks) are being suppressed in favor of stories that aren’t (like the recording of him bragging about forcibly kissing and groping women).
This alleged conspiracy includes outlets like CNN, the New York Times, the Washington Post, and People magazine, among others. In Trump’s mind, it now also includes Saturday Night Live.
Last night, to nobody’s surprise, SNL aired a skit parodying the second presidential debate. Alec Baldwin, playing Trump, uncomfortably lurks behind Kate McKinnon’s Hillary Clinton, just as Trump actually did during the debate. Trump’s interest in girls is mocked — “I love kids. OK, I love them so much I marry them,” Baldwin’s Trump at one point says — as is Trump’s convenient belief that the women who have accused Bill Clinton of sexual misconduct should be taken seriously, while those accusing him should not.
Clinton isn’t portrayed in a flattering light either, with McKinnon mocking her for being stiff and rehearsed during the debate. Watch for yourself:
While neither candidate was portrayed in a glowing light, Trump was upset about Baldwin’s performance. On Twitter, he cited it as yet another example of how the media is rigging the election against him.
SNL lampooning public figures isn’t new to this election cycle, of course. And when Trump hosted the show less than a year ago, he had a very different reaction:
It’s just another example of Trump’s legendary insecurity — insecurity that was apparently on display back when Trump hosted SNL in 2004. In recent months, Trump has retreated almost entirely to the protective cocoon of Fox News — he hardly ever makes appearances on other networks. He hasn’t held a press conference since July 27th. As the general election has heated up and scrutiny on him has intensified, Trump has increased the vitriol of his attacks against the media.
Weeks before the election, the man who seeks control of America’s nuclear arsenal apparently apparently can’t sit through an SNL parody of himself without lashing out.