One of the former regulars on NBC’s “Saturday Night Live” revisited the night when then-candidate Donald Trump guest-hosted the show almost two years ago, telling NPR that the incident “only grows more embarrassing and shameful as time goes on.”
Taran Killam, who did Trump impersonations on the show before Alec Baldwin got the role, recalled that protesters gathered outside the studio during Trump’s appearance in November 2015.
“We could hear the protests during our table read,” Killam told NPR’s “It’s Been a Minute.” “As we’re reading 40 mediocre sketches, we just hear, ‘No Trump! Donald Trump!’ … I am embarrassed, upon reflection, just because of how everyone was right. Every person outside of that building protesting was absolutely right.”
Killam also said: “It was not enjoyable at the time and something that only grows more embarrassing and shameful as time goes on. I don’t necessarily put so much weight into [the idea of] Trump hosting ‘SNL’ helping him become president, but there’s definitely something where it normalizes him and it makes it OK for him to be part of the conversation.”
Killam added: “I don’t think the intention of having him on was ever politically based. … But I don’t think it was considered — the implications that it had then and could have moving forward. And I think looking back … there’s nothing good I can take from that week. Because he’s not an enjoyable person to be around — he’s from a different class; he’s from a different way of life. There was never any common ground.”
Killam also recalled: “The most heartbreaking moment at the time: We’re at the host dinner, and he brings [his wife] Melania and he brings [his daughter] Ivanka and [son-in-law] Jared [Kushner]. And he says [to SNL creator Lorne Michaels], ‘You know, Lorne, if I don’t win this thing, I’m gonna be fine. We just bought this beautiful piece of property in Scotland. If I have to be president, I’m never gonna see that thing.’ And that that was his priority in that moment, that that was even a consideration, made me sad.”