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.
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."
On NBC's Saturday Night Live, Pete Davidson mocks GOP Congressional candidate Dan Crenshaw for losing his eye in wa… https://t.co/8CMu79tLCp— Ryan Saavedra (@Ryan Saavedra)1541321322.0
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.
Good rule in life: I try hard not to offend; I try harder not to be offended. That being said, I hope @nbcsnl reco… https://t.co/TWybONUZ9O— Dan Crenshaw (@Dan Crenshaw)1541358784.0
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.
This is absolutely revolting! You cannot credibly complain about @realDonaldTrump insensitive rhetoric if you’re go… https://t.co/gCckdEdHCM— Kurt Bardella (@Kurt Bardella)1541343206.0
Dan Crenshaw shouldn’t be in Congress. He will vote lockstep with Trump to privatize the VA and hurt veterans, but… https://t.co/9M1iykOYq9— Jon Soltz (@Jon Soltz)1541361508.0
The NRCC also quickly issued a blistering statement about Davidson and the Saturday Night Live program.
NEW: NRCC Statement on SNL's Pete Davidson Mocking War Hero Dan Crenshaw https://t.co/qb9Oj0WjV1 https://t.co/SnR54KZiq1— NRCC (@NRCC)1541344203.0