‘SNL’ parodies the Cohen hearings, with help from Ben Stiller and Bill Hader
Actors Bill Hader and Ben Stiller made guest appearances on “Saturday Night Live” over the weekend, parodying Michael Cohen’s seven-hour testimony on Capitol Hill, which consumed the attention of Washington and the media.
The cast started the show with a re-enactment of Cohen’s opening statement Wednesday to the House Oversight and Reform Committee, in which the former attorney and fixer for President Donald Trump declared that Trump “is a racist, he is a con man, and he is a cheat.”
“I want this to stay professional,” “SNL’s” Kenan Thompson, who portrayed Chairman Elijah Cummings, D-Md., spelling out the ground rules for the hearing. “If you hear something outrageous, please do not ‘ooh’ and ‘aah.’ This is not ‘Married … with Children.’”
Then he made a pointed observation.
“For any other president, this hearing would be the most damning and humiliating moment of their lives,” Thompson-as-Cummings said. “But for Trump, it’s just Wednesday.”
Portraying Trump’s former right-hand man Cohen, Stiller began with an opening statement in which he thanked the committee for inviting him “to correct the record under oath.”
“Of course, the first time I testified was also under oath,” Stiller’s Cohen said. “But this time I, like, really mean it.”
“In conclusion, I know that I was wrong – and I know it because I got caught,” Cohen said. “For too many years, I was loyal to a man when I should not have been. Now I know how Khloe Kardashian feels.”
He then slipped into the Natalie Imbruglia song “Torn.”
“But now I’m all out of faith. This is how I feel. I’m cold and I’m ashamed and lying naked on the floor. Illusion never changed into something real. I’m wide-awake and I can see the perfect sky is torn,” he declared.
When it was his turn to speak, Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, played by Hader, ripped into Cohen, calling him a “lying piece of human trash!”
“Mr. Chairman,” he said, “you’re right that I’m angry. I’m angry that I have to sit here through this two-bit, dirtbag flea circus. I’m so angry I couldn’t even wear a jacket!”
“You’ve been working in some of the sleaziest circles in America for years,” Hader’s Jordan continued, asking Stiller’s Cohen: “What other criminals and lowlifes have you worked for?”
“I was the deputy finance chairman for the Republican Party,” Cohen responded.
“What?” Jordan said.
The “SNL” cast also parodied questions from Rep. Jackie Speier, D-Calif., Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, D-Fla., Rep. Paul Gosar, R-Ariz., and Rep. Mark Meadows, R-N.C. Then Cummings concluded the hearing.
“This hearing has already been going on for seven hours, so let’s take a break and then Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez will probably do a dance. Is that right?”
“No,” replied Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., as played by Melissa Villaseñor. “I was going to ask, like, carefully researched questions.”
“Yeah, clearly that is not what today is about,” Cummings said, asking Cohen whether he had any final words for the committee.
“Look,” Cohen said, as soft music began to play in the background. “Maybe I’m not a good person. Maybe I’m a liar. Maybe I’m a fool. Maybe I’ve ruined hundreds of people’s lives.”
“I’m sorry – is there a ‘but’ coming?” Cummings interjected.
“No, there isn’t,” Cohen said. “Thank you.”