This Saturday, Donald Trump will host the iconic comedy show Saturday Night Live. Trump, who is running to be the Republican nominee for president, is looking to boost his visibility and popularity. But history shows that hosts do not have the last laugh.
Six other presidential candidates have hosted on Saturday Night Live (SNL) before their respective elections, yet none have gone on to win the White House.
— Saturday Night Live (@nbcsnl) November 8, 2015
As host, Trump will perform in a majority of the skits and give an opening monologue. This is different from a guest spot like those done by Barack Obama or Hillary Clinton, who appeared for just one segment. Back in 2007, Obama played himself in a Clinton Halloween party skit while Hillary, in a recent show, played a bartender, Val.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 8, 2015
As Trump prepares to host and perform this weekend, should he be fearful of the “SNL curse” that befell these candidates?
Sharpton ran for the 2004 Democratic nomination, and his appearance on the show caused concern over federal election regulations. NBC affiliate stations were worried that because Sharpton was already on the ballot in some states, they would have to create equal air time for other candidates.
A rival, Joe Lieberman, requested equal time and NBC agreed to air reruns of a Lieberman town hall appearance in specific markets. Sharpton opened the show by bursting into a rendition of James Brown’s “I Feel Good”. He ultimately lost the primary to John Kerry in March 2004.