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"SNL" Gets Debate Fever, Visit from Big Bird

Obama, Romney and Chris Matthews also among those parodied on "SNL"

By Patrick Hickey Jr.
|  Sunday, Oct 7, 2012  |  Updated 5:37 PM EDT
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Big Bird stopped by Weekend Update.

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Barack Obama forgot to get Michelle an anniversary gift and couldn't handle Denver's high altitude, which is why he stumbled in his first debate against Mitt Romney, according to "Saturday Night Live." The NBC late-night show also received a visit from Big Bird this week, who weighed in after Romney said he would cut government funding for PBS.

Appearing on Weekend Update, Big Bird said he was groggy because it was seven hours past his bedtime. The iconic children’s television character said he found out his name had been dragged into the debate after receiving a million tweets.

"So you're on Twitter," Seth Meyers asked.

"No, I'm a bird. Tweeting is how we talk," Big Bird said. 

He said he felt like he had become famous. But asked to make a political statement, Big Bird declined, saying he didn't "want to ruffle any feathers."

The visit came after Jay Pharaoh channeled Obama once again for "SNL's" opening sketch, and showed the world a preoccupied president, one who let Romney go unchallenged because he was worried about what to get the first lady for their anniversary. He even forgot one of his children’s names while he fought off apparent lightheadedness from the Denver air.

Obama did say he wanted to hire "millions and millions" of teachers though. As many as it takes.

The miscues allowed Mitt Romney, played by Jason Sudeikis, to discuss at length his 41-step plan for the country, which included “six abrupt reversals of position and three outright lies.”

Moderator Jim Lehrer (Chris Parnell), asked Obama whether he cared to respond to Romney having also taken credit for killing Osama Bin Laden. "No, you two go ahead," Obama said while pondering what was the better anniversary gift: a Denver Broncos sweater, a bathrobe, or a world’s greatest mom mug.

Scared at the possibility of a shutdown at PBS, Lehrer,  too had other things on his mind. Like Obama, Lehrer let Romney drone on.

Later in the show Sudeikis portrayed MSNBC political talk show host Chris Matthews. Surrounded by 5-hour energy drinks, the livid Sudeikis suggested Obama man-up and get a face tattoo like Mike Tyson. Among the excuses made by Kenan Thompson’s Al Sharpton for Obama's debate performance was one that Romney and the president might have switched bodies before the event.

Seth Meyers’ “Weekend Update” segment continued the political banter.

“You have to hand it to Mitt Romney, cause President Obama sure did,” Meyers said at the beginning of the segment.

He was also critical of Obama’s inability to bring up on Romney’s "47 percent" comments. “Obama elected to take the high road, forgetting that that road leads to building houses with Jimmy Carter.”

Meyers also addressed Romney’s vow to pull subsidies for PBS, regardless of his affinity for Big Bird. “It’s a surprising threat considering Mitt is such an excellent muppet name,” Meyers said.

The Weekend Update host was especially critical of Lehrer for repeatedly allowing Romney and Obama to go over their allotted time on questions during the debate.

“Jim, if that’s how long you think two minutes is, your wife is a very lucky woman,” Meyers said.

In a winners/losers mini-segment, Meyers hailed Fox News as a winner amid the political fracas and said the news channel must have said after the debate, “I think we can report this exactly the way it happened.”

His cynicism was echoed towards the Democratic Party as well. “Is there anything more exciting than Joe Biden thinking it is up to him to get the lead back?” Meyers said. “It’s Tebow time.”

This week's host was James Bond himself, Daniel Craig, who looked back on his murderous roles over the years and in addition to Bond, played a perverted construction worker and a spaceship captain.” Rock mainstays Muse performed “Madness” and “Panic Station.”

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