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Saturday Night Live cast member faces widespread condemnation after skit mocking injured veteran

Saturday Night Live cast member Pete Davidson — seen here with pop star Ariana Grande at the MTV music video awards in 2018 — has come under heavy criticism for a joke about the appearance of a disabled veteran. (Photo by Nicholas Hunt/Getty Images for MTV)

It is certainly not news that Saturday Night Live likes to poke fun of politicians, especially on the Republican side of the aisle. But a recent bit mocking Republican congressional candidate Dan Crenshaw — who lost an eye in an IED blast in Afghanistan — went too far for many on both sides of the aisle.

What happened? 

During the "Weekend Update" portion of the NBC program, cast member Pete Davidson began a segment discussing Texas Republican congressional candidate Dan Crenshaw, who he sarcastically described as "pretty cool" as a picture of Crenshaw flashed on the screen.

Then Davidson chuckled and said, "You may be surprised to hear he’s a congressional candidate for Texas and not a hit-man in a porno movie... I’m sorry, I know he lost his eye in war, or whatever. Whatever."

Crenshaw, who is fluent in Spanish, is a former Navy SEAL who has been deployed overseas five times, according to his campaign website. On the third such deployment in 2012, he was injured by an IED blast that almost blinded him, and cost him his right eye. He wears the patch to cover the damage caused by that blast.

Crenshaw is running to represent the heavily-Republican second district of Texas, and is widely expected to win against his general election opponent, Democrat Todd Litton. The incumbent, Ted Poe (R) is retiring, and the race is rated "Likely Republican" by the Cook Political Report.

Crenshaw responded on Twitter in a restrained fashion.

The skit was likewise immediately condemned by numerous conservative and Republican figures. However, in this case, the condemnation was nearly universal, including a number of nonpartisan journalists and liberal commentators.

The NRCC also quickly issued a blistering statement about Davidson and the Saturday Night Live program.


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