SNL: Cheating Politicians Don't Get The Airplay Tiger Woods Does

December 13th, 2009 12:00 PM

"Saturday Night Live" opened yesterday's show by mocking media for supposedly under-reporting the extra-marital affairs of three politicians, but the sketch completely ignored how the press boycotted the philandering of Democrat presidential candidate John Edwards for nine months.

The program's producers also opted not to include disgraced former Democrat Governor of New York Eliot Spitzer in the group.

Instead, on stage were Gov. Mark Sanford (R-S.C.), played by Jason Sudeikis, Sen John Ensign (R-Nev.), played by Bill Hader, and former Sen. John Edwards (D-N.C.), played by Will Forte.

Despite the absurdity of suggesting that Ensign and Sanford's respective affairs were under-reported by the press, "SNL" writers completely avoided the fact that the news media, with the exception of the National Enquirer, boycotted Edwards' affair until after Barack Obama had been declared the Democratic presidential nominee (video embedded below the fold with partial transcript, h/t Story Balloon):

GOVERNOR MARK SANFORD (R-S.C.): The three of us are here today because there's something very wrong going on in this country and we can no longer keep silent about it. Over the last two weeks, our national media has engaged in an orgy of coverage of professional golfer Tiger Woods and his alleged extra-marital affairs. The coverage has been excessive, it has been lurid, and it has completely overshadowed coverage of our extra-marital affairs.

SENATOR JOHN ENSIGN (R-NEV.): Like Tiger Woods, we have broken vows, but in addition, as elected officials, we have also violated the public's trust. It's a pretty big deal. And it seems the media couldn't care less.

SANFORD: With us, there has been practically no coverage. It is a clear double-standard.

ENSIGN: Where's the outrage? We're still in office.

FORMER SENATOR JOHN EDWARDS (R-N.C.): I had a love-child. [...]

SANFORD: Now why this clear double-standard? Is it perhaps racial? The fact that we are white men and Tiger Woods is, I guess, um, Black, Asian, Polynesian, Cherokee?

EDWARDS: Isn't he Puerto Rican?

ENSIGN: I thought Dominican.

SANFORD: No, no, no, he's not Dominican. You're thinking of A-Rod....In any event, we pray this isn't about race. Our nation has soon too much of that.

ENSIGN: If I may, let me make a point here. Many of Tiger's girlfriends were meaningless one night stands. He barely spent any time with them. Certainly not enough to affect his work unlike us.

SANFORD: That's right, my girlfriend, my girlfriend lived in Argentina, and I was down there all the time. And that is a long way from South Carolina. No wonder my state is a fiscal disaster. The fact that it took the media so long to notice really says something about their priorities.

EDWARDS: Apparently one love-child isn't interesting enough. I guess it has to be triplets.

Claiming Ensign and Sanford's respective affairs were under-covered is absurd.

When Ensign's affair broke, all three broadcast morning news programs immediately reported the story. Sanford's affair was also heavily covered

Yet, when the National Enquirer first reported Edwards' affair in October 2007, despite him being a candidate for president at the time, the rest of the media completely ignored the story until after Barack Obama was declared the Democratic presidential nominee.

"SNL" writers and producers chose not to poke fun at that fact, or how if media had done their job back then, Edwards might have been forced to pull out of the race, and Hillary Clinton likely would have taken a lot of the votes cast for him in the caucuses and primaries possibly defeating Obama.

Not only would that have been funnier than what "SNL" presented, it would have been a far more accurate knock at the real double-standard that exists concerning how the press covers affairs involving politicians: Republican philanderers get immediate and excessive coverage; Democrats typically get far less coverage and their party affiliation is very often withheld.

Beyond that, ignoring former Democrat Governor Spitzer in a sketch mocking media's coverage of adultery filmed "Live from New York" is also the height of hypocrisy.

As NewsBusters has been reporting, "SNL" has been doing a good job of late acting as an equal opportunity satirist.

Sadly, this segment was almost less impartial than it was funny.