It would seem that Bernie Sanders—down nearly nine points in the latest polls to totally fun and trustworthy opponent Hillary Clinton—should be in full panic mode by now. Instead, Sanders has chosen to double down on what appear to be insurmountable odds, declaring he’ll take his fight all the way to the DNC in Philadelphia in July. It’s a message to his passionate base, who have flocked to his sense of humor, resilience, and man-of-the-people shtick. As he loves to imply: he’s not a billionaire, he’s one of you. For the time being, Bernie’s here to stay.
Lucky for us this means we’ll get more of Larry David, everyone’s other favorite bespectacled Brooklynite, who has found a bit of a revitalization on Saturday Night Live for his uncanny Sanders impersonations… But the person who lucks out the most, it seems, it Larry David, who, according to Sanders, would in fact get to keep his job during a Sanders presidency.
Thus continues the wonderfully public political shidduch for Bernie and Larry, a couple of old men unafraid to say what everyone’s thinking, whether it’s on income inequality or the perils of “verbal texting.”
There’s something sweetly unique in David’s frequent Bernie impressions. SNL doesn’t exactly boast a history of flattering political impressions; whether it was Bill Clinton using quarter-pounders to explain complicated geopolitical maneuvers or Tina Fey’s dithering Sarah Palin, the show has often opted for hard-edged lampooning that has, maybe even swung elections, or, at the very least, perceptions. With David, however, there seems to be a different tone.
Take his first appearance as Sanders back in the fall, when David took the stage to beg America for their vacuum pennies and chide billionaires for owning an outrageous amount of underwear. As the season wore on, David was back on again and again, lightly mocking Bernie in a way that made him seem endearing and real. When the two met during a February sketch, it was practically a Sanders for President commercial—David played an out-of-touch elite, and Bernie chided him for his haughtiness.
As the Democratic Convention draws closer, SNL may drop the kid gloves and skewer Bernie as they have other candidates. Until then, enjoy some of America’s favorite Jews finding their basherts.
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Jesse Bernstein is a former Intern at Tablet.