Actor Alec Baldwin said President Trump – who he plays on Saturday Night Live – deserves as much mockery as can be thrown at him.
‘We can’t be mean enough to this guy,’ Baldwin told an audience Tuesday night at George Washington University, his alma mater, in downtown Washington, D.C.
Baldwin was on campus promoting his faux Trump memoir ‘You Can’t Spell America Without Me’ with his co-author Kurt Andersen, when he got ‘a little bit serious’ and bemoaned how the president is squandering a ‘tremendous opportunity’ by not appreciating the moment and the people he meets.
Actor Alec Baldwin (center) visited George Washington University to talk about his new book ‘You Can’t Spell America Without Me’ with co-author Kurt Andersen (right) and Politics & Prose bookstore co-owner Lissa Muscatine (left)
Of President Trump, actor Alec Baldwin said, ‘We can’t be mean enough to this guy,’ suggesting he expected the president to become more presidential as time went by and not squander such a great opportunity
Alec Baldwin (center) and Kurt Andersen’s (right) new book is a faux memoir written by the Donald Trump that Baldwin plays on Saturday Night Live
Actor Alec Baldwin (center) explained that his disappointment in Trump comes from how many interesting – and needy – people the president meets and how little he seems to appreciate the job
Co-author Kurt Andersen (right) chimed in explaining he thought President Trump has deliberately stayed the same in order to keep appeasing his base, who aren’t interested in a more presidential Trump
‘I really expected him to change,’ Baldwin said.
The actor, comedian and author said that he expected after Trump’s win that yes, he would be unprepared, and probably not be accustomed to playing well with others – he had been at the head of his family’s company for decades by then – and that he’d have some trouble believing he had won.
Baldwin said he thought Ivanka Trump, maybe, would have snapped her dad out of it.
‘I thought he would take a deep breath and say, “I’m the president now,” and begin to focus on, not only the power and the prestige and all of those kinds of tactile but more common perks and benefits of being president,’ he said.
But Baldwin was expecting even more.
‘The president of the United States, beyond anyone alive, maybe more than anyone alive in the world, has the view of humanity that you could never get somewhere else,’ the former 30 Rock star noted.
When you step out as president, Baldwin argued, ‘You meet the best and the brightest around the world.’
‘You see real human suffering and people who are trying to heal that suffering,’ he continued. ‘You come home and you meet the creme de la creme of the arts, letters, academia, politics, all you do is shake hands and go to dinners and have photo-ops with the greatest Americans alive or the neediest Americans alive.’
‘And I thought to myself, my God, he would finally come to his senses and say what a tremendous opportunity this is for me as a human being,’ Baldwin said.
But, in the comedian’s opinion, that hasn’t happened.
‘Forget about it,’ Baldwin scoffed.
Andersen said he thought Trump’s consistency was also a political calculation, in that his haters would continue to hate him if he became more presidential and his supporters could like him less.
‘I think something like that is probably going through his head,’ the co-author said.
Baldwin also talked about how he was cast as Trump in the first place.
Saturday Night Live’s creator and producer Lorne Michael is a ‘dear friend’ who Baldwin knows from summering on Long Island.
‘And he said to me, “Tina had an idea that you would play Trump,”‘ Baldwin said, referencing his 30 Rock co-star Tina Fey.
‘I think I spit my drink out at him,’ Baldwin continued. ‘Trump? That’s the most asinine thing I’ve ever heard.’
The idea was that he would play about three shows and be out, as SNL’s season was beginning in fall 2016 and a couple episodes would get Baldwin through the November presidential election.
‘And it would be over,’ he noted. ‘And then, of course, it wasn’t over.’
He says he’s stuck with the Trump character not because he wants to.
‘I’m the first person who wakes up everyday and goes, we’re done, we’re done … I’m sick of this,’ he said.
But then he goes outside and gets ‘fantastic Alec!’ and ‘you’re great Alec!’ and ‘you’re getting us through this,’ he said.