Speed Reads

Trump v SNL

Trump's big problem with SNL's Sean Spicer spoof was apparently that Spicer was played by a woman

Saturday Night Live is, it seems, relevant again. Alec Baldwin's impersonation of President Trump can spark a mean tweet from Trump himself, but Melissa McCarthy's tour de force as Press Secretary Sean Spicer on Saturday's show has really rattled the White House, Politico reports. Spicer has tried to play it off, joking about how McCarthy has his gum-chewing wrong, and on Monday afternoon he told Politico he'd rather talk about work and "it doesn't really matter what I think." But it does matter what his boss thinks, and Trump reportedly wasn't happy with the skit. From Politico:

More than being lampooned as a press secretary who makes up facts, it was Spicer's portrayal by a woman that was most problematic in the president's eyes, according to sources close to him. And the unflattering send-up by a female comedian was not considered helpful for Spicer's longevity in the grueling, high-profile job in which he has struggled to strike the right balance between representing an administration that considers the media the "opposition party," and developing a functional relationship with the press. "Trump doesn't like his people to look weak," added a top Trump donor. [Politico]

Spicer has been working really hard to repair media bridges he burned on his first outing, the day after Trump's inauguration, and he's playing the dual roles of press secretary and communications director — because, The New York Times reported Sunday, Trump "is used to quarterbacking his own media strategy, and did not see the value of hiring an outsider." Still, inside the White House, Trump people are quick to tell the reporters that Spicer wasn't the president's first choice for the job, and just the fact that he was lampooned by a female instead of male comedian has reportedly made his nearly impossible job of impressing his boss and maintaining credibility with the press that much harder.

On Monday night, Rosie O'Donnell volunteered to play Stephen Bannon on SNL.

In case you aren't one of the 14 million people who have viewed the SNL skit already, or want to watch again to marvel at the power of satire, here you go. Peter Weber