The 15 years Sen. Al Franken spent as an “Saturday Night Live” writer and performer didn’t protect him from criticism during tonight’s edition of “SNL Weekend Edition.” The opposite, in fact.
“SNL” was criticized for saying nothing about Harvey Weinstein the weekend after shocking accusations of sexual harassment and rape against the disgraced movie mogul became public. But Saturday night, “Weekend Update” co-anchors Colin Jost and Michael Che started the segment with several minutes on the accusations by KABC radio anchor Leeann Tweeden that Franken sexually harassed and groped her during a 2006 USO tour.
After noting the infamous photo in which Franken appears to be groping Tweeden’s breasts while she sleeps, Jost said “now, I know this photo looks bad, but remember it also is bad.”
Appearing to nod to Harvey Weinstein’s widely mocked statement that he “came of age in the 60s and 70s,” Jost said about Franken that “sure this was taken before Franken ran for public office, but it was also taken after he was a sophomore in high school. It’s pretty hard to be like oh, come on, he didn’t know anything he was only 55.”
Che then noted Tweeden’s accusation that Franken forced her to kiss him while they were rehearsing a comedy sketch, and also noted the conventional wisdom that the last half an hour of “SNL” is always the weakest. “Come on man, didn’t the troops in Afghanistan have it hard enough without having to sit through sketch comedy? I mean people can barely even stay up to watch sketches after Weekend Update.”