Saturday Night Live opened this past weekend’s episode with a skit titled It’s a Wonderful Trump which played-off the Frank Capra-Jimmy Stewart holiday seasonal classic.
But instead of George Bailey having never been born, the Lorne Michaels troupe took a stab at what life would be like in Washington had Donald Trump never become President of the United States.
Sadly, like with so many of their skits, SNL had a great concept but missed the mark.
If you missed it but want to judge for yourself, you can watch the clip here:
I am not sure what the writers were aiming for?
Kellyanne Conway appears fresh-faced and perky instead of haggard and hoarse. Is that funny?
She would still be a fraud and a habitual liar peddling alternative facts, right?
Sarah Huckabee Sanders runs her own public relations firm.
Would she soon learn that while lying for the unindicted-co-conspirator in the Oval Office has yet to provoke consequences, lying on behalf of a client or to a government body like the FBI or SEC would?
Would she be honest and transparent, or just continue to claim such while every word out of her mouth continued to be a lie?
Brett Kavanaugh (played expertly by Matt Damon) is a middle-aged frat boy who jokes about beer and hands Donald Trump a calendar.
Of course, as Trump never became president, Brett Kavanaugh never became a Supreme Court Justice. But the flaws in Kavanaugh’s character are not the keg parties and the silly nicknames he gave his friends but that a woman beyond reproach testified under oath before the United States Senate that Kavanaugh raped her.
The last comedian to try to work rape into a comedy skit was Hannibal Buress, and the punchline ended up being Bill Cosby likely spending the rest of his life in prison. Kavanaugh gets to spend the rest of his on the highest court in the land.
SNL clearly just went for the easy jokes as there is nothing funny about a serial sexual abuser sitting on the Court which defines (and can limit) women’s rights.
Robert DeNiro was wasted as Special Counsel Robert Mueller.
Rather than the double-whammy of ardent Trump-hater DeNiro delivering a riff on his famous “F-Trump” speech from the Tony Awards as the straight-laced and frequently genteel Mueller, the writers had him play it straight.
What would have been Mueller’s fate had Trump never become president? He would have been able to spend a lot more time with his grandchildren. Oh, those SNL writers. That is hilarious.
The other issue is that, apart from Conway (who was part of the 2016 campaign) and Don Jr. & Eric (his sons) who also were caricatured in the skit, none of the other folks halfheartedly playing for laughs would have been part of Trump’s orbit if he had not become president.
What Saturday Night Live avoided (and I get it, it is supposed to be a comedy show) is how different the world would be if Donald Trump had never become president…and Hillary Rodham Clinton had.
Merrick Garland would have replaced Antonin Scalia on the Supreme Court.
A liberal Justice would have replaced the often-swing Justice Anthony Kennedy.
The two appointments would have shifted the Supreme Court hard to the left instead of to the right.
Ruth Bader Ginsburg could have retired knowing that a Democratic president, with a newly-elected Democratic Senate majority, would fill her chair with a like-minded jurist.
With uber-conservative Clarence Thomas likely next to be replaced, the Court would have at least a 6-3 liberal lean for the next 30 or more years.
Coal as an energy source would be a thing only spoken of in history books as President Clinton kept her promise to put a lot of coal miners out of work.
Part of it would be her personal positions on energy and environmental policies, but she would also be hard at work to honor America’s commitment as the 196th and final signatory to the Paris Agreement.
The Environmental Protection Agency would be hard at work (and well-funded) finding ways to protect our air and water, and levying punishment against those who pollute.
The newly-elected Democratic majorities in the House and Senate would also have acted quickly to do what Republicans threatened for nearly a decade but could not achieve: repeal and replace Obamacare. The implementation of Medicare for All would finally achieve the goal of universal and affordable insurance coverage for every American.
The rights of every woman would be law, actual on-the-books law.
The Equal Rights Amendment would finally be ratified by enough states for the Amendment to become part of the Constitution.
The left-shifted Supreme Court would strike-down every unconstitutional effort by red states to limit a woman’s rights to her own body, whether she is considering abortion, contraception, or believes the gender in her heart is not the gender on her birth certificate.
North Korea and Russia would still be America’s adversaries instead of on-again/off-again romances.
Iran would still be closely watched, but still adhering to the nuclear deal.
Saudi Arabia would be on an updated version of the ‘Axis of Evil’ list as a state sponsor of terrorism.
Israel would be warned they are at risk of being added to the list, and America would still be a neutral arbiter of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
White supremacists would retain the same rights as every American, to assemble peacefully and speak their opinions. But they would not be permitted to incite violence, and numerous alt-right groups would be designated as domestic terrorism organizations and would be prosecuted as such when their hatred became criminal acts.
America would have sensible gun control, and the left-leaning Supreme Court would ensure the laws passed muster.
America would have gerrymandering reform, even if it had to be mandated as part of a modernized Voting Rights Act, so that every vote counted equally, and Republicans could not control states like Wisconsin with a super-majority despite winning 40% of the vote statewide.
America would have comprehensive voting reform so that Secretaries of State like Brian Kemp in Georgia could not preside over the rules (and voter roll purges) of their own races for governor and so states like Florida could have efficient machines and common-sense policies to count votes.
America would end felon disenfranchisement and make sure every citizen who needed an ID to vote could have one whether they could afford one of not.
Doing otherwise is a poll tax, plain and simple.
The United States of America under President Hillary Rodham Clinton, and backed by Democratic majorities in the House and Senate, would be a liberal utopia.
Every long-simmering item on the wish list would be not just on the table for consideration; Democrats would ram it through no matter how loud those whiny Republicans howled.
Screw even collegiality.
The power is absolute and dammit, that power would be used.
Don’t like it? TOO DAMN BAD!
Then, just for the sake of argument, let’s say that two years into President Hillary Clinton’s first term, Republicans (and the rest of America) discovered that Donald Trump had really won the election?
That America’s most reviled nemesis, Russia, had rigged the 2016 election to ensure Clinton won knowing that her policies would be so anti-Republican and so one-sided that it just might spark a second civil war?
How do you all think Republicans would be handling that?
Would Republicans be patiently waiting for 2020 to have an opportunity to replace President Hillary Clinton?
Would Republicans not be demanding that every long-term (or lifetime) appointment President Hillary Clinton made be vacated?
That every treaty she signed be voided?
If right-wing America found out that Donald Trump really won the 2016 election on a promise to turn the United States in an ultra-conservative, guns everywhere, America First, Christian theme park for Republicans to enjoy until the water became too polluted to drink and the air to foul to breathe, but instead the nation had lurched so far to the left (thanks to Russia) that there were efforts to rename it the United Socialist States of America…would Republicans be sitting there taking a wait and see attitude?
Donald Trump, the Republican Party, the NRA, the religious right (yes, that means you, Jerry Fallwell, Jr.), and the Russians conspired to steal the 2016 election from Hillary Clinton and the Democrats and have spent the past two years enacting an agenda so far to the right that it is alt-right.
So many of the policies will have consequences which cannot be undone.
So many of the appointments are for life, meaning Justices like Brett Kavanaugh will still be on the bench long after the relationship between folks like Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin is just something our grandchildren read about in history books.
If Donald Trump is an illegitimate president, just a pawn in the geopolitical game inserted by Vladimir Putin to wreak having that benefits only Putin’s Russia, then every appointment Trump made is illegitimate.
This is especially true if the Senate which confirmed these illegitimate appointees also contained Putin plants who, whether due to blackmail, greed, or thirst for power, put doing Putin’s bidding ahead of America’s best-interests and the Constitution.
Think about it.
If the roles were reversed and right-wing Republicans had been cheated the way left-leaning Democrats were cheated, and the consequences of that fraud would last decades, would the Republicans allow President Hillary Clinton’s illegitimate presidency as Putin’s errand girl to continue?
Why should we then?
Why should we continue to accept illegitimate Donald Trump?
Sadly, the Constitution does not provide many options. It was always assumed a Manchurian Candidate of this type could never win, and that if he/she did, Congress would use the power of impeachment and removal to right the wrong and restore someone loyal to America to power.
Our founding fathers never considered that a major party (in this case, the majority party, for now at least) would fail to act in America’s best interest just so they could continue to deliver trinkets to their treasonous base.
We must, as American citizens, demand that Republicans stand with Democrats to right the wrong Trump and Putin have perpetrated on America.
What a wonderful place America would be again, right?