The sketch featured several “SNL” actors as congressional leaders are locked in a fight over a proposed $3.5 trillion social benefits bill, and it was the end in particular that Democrats should take note of. The final lines of the sketch offer up the hard truth of what lies ahead for them in the 2022 midterm elections if they can’t find a way to compromise: They’re all “bad.”
Saturday night’s cutout began with new cast member James Austin Johnson revisiting his summer ups and downs – Broadway shows are back again after a long Covid-related shutdown, but “So is the Taliban,” quipped Johnson. “So, win some, lose some.”
From there it was a political controversy as the “SNL” version of the liberal censors. Joe Manchin and Kirsten Cinema, played by Eddie Bryant and Cecily Strong, took place with progressive members of the party over a hotly debated spending bill.
For example, “SNL” representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (played by Melissa Villaseor) announced that she wanted “at least $300 billion in clean energy tax credits”, to which Munchkin replied, “And I I’m saying zero.” Biden, as moderator-in-chief, triumphantly replied, “See? Same page!”
While Munchkin was portrayed as a relentless counter to the demands of progressives, the original comic villain of the sketch was Strong Cinema, whose character was summed up with this funny and poignant line: “What do I want from this bill? ? I’ll never tell, ’cause I didn’t come to Congress to make friends—and so far, mission accomplished.
There also came a moment when progressives, including Ego Nvodim as Representative Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, struck a deal with Munchkin over funding to improve our nation’s roads. (He had Munchkin’s support because “trucks live here.” When a stunned Biden asked why, Sinema responded defensively with one word: “chaos.”)
Does cinema really want “chaos”? Not likely, but I can tell you as someone who hosts a daily progressive radio show that more anger is directed at Cinema than at Munchkin. In the public eye, Munchkin at least shared the broad strokes of the deal he would accept, while cinema hasn’t publicly expressed his bottom line (though his office). issued a statement
explaining on Thursday that he has “expanded his views” to President Biden and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer).
While we can debate what any of these Democrats really want, the truth about the risky outcome that awaits their pique is exactly what we heard at the end of Saturday’s cold open.
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As former New York governor Andrew Cuomo said, “Our Democrats have each other’s backs,” Pete Davidson said. Andrew Cuomo, who then urged the bill to be passed because “like me, it deserves a second chance. And a third chance. And at least up to 11 chances.”
When “SNL’s” Chuck Schumer appeared, declaring that “we are Democrats together,” Biden echoed that sentiment with the line, “Fundamentally, we are all equal.” To which Davidson’s Cuomo dropped the punchline: “Scrud!”
It was then that we heard the iconic opening line, “Live from New York, it’s Saturday night!” But if Democrats don’t pass some version of a comprehensive “human infrastructure” bill, after the mid-2022 they’ll be screaming, “Dead from Washington, D.C., it’s the Democratic Party!”
The fact is that the political party of the President traditionally lose seats
in mid-term elections. See what happened to President Barack Obama and Donald Trump. In Obama’s first midterm in 2010, Democrats suffered heavy losses 63 House seats and six in the Senate
. Under Trump in 2018, the GOP lost 40 House seats – although the GOP held on to two Senate seats.
Democrats don’t have many seats to lose less than 10 seats
in the house and 50-50 draw in the Senate
. If they do not pass this social spending change, what is their reasoning for re-election in 2022? Asking constituents to take control of the House and Senate again, and this time they might be able to pass something? This is not the kind of logic that animates voters.
One of the few exceptions that is potentially instructive to Democrats is the one that occurred in 1934, in the first midterm of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt. In that election, the Democrats won 18 seats – House and Senate nine each
. This was because FDR gave extensive programs in 1933 as part of his “new Deal”
To help Americans suffering during the Great Depression. True, FDR had a lot big majority
In Congress than today’s Democrats, but the thing is, Democrats are the best bet in 2022 for the American people.
Here’s the bitter truth for the Democrats, as they were told by “SNL”: Make a deal on the spending bill, or you’re all “bad.” What is going to happen?