Tina Fey casts doubt on SNL's political influence
© Saturday Night Live/YouTube

Comedian Tina Fey dismissed the political influence of “Saturday Night Live” in an interview on actor David Tennant’s podcast Monday.

Fey brought up the show, where she was head writer from 1999 to 2006, in the context of her now-iconic impression of former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, the 2008 Republican vice presidential nominee.

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“I didn’t think it was going to influence the election,” Fey told Tennant. “I don’t think that show can really sway people. I think you can shine a light. You can help them articulate something they’re already feeling about a given person.”

Fey premiered her impression of Palin after she left the show’s staff and has since revived it multiple times, most recently in 2018.

Fey also said she opposed the decision to invite Palin onto the show in 2008, although she acknowledged it gave the show a ratings windfall.

“I didn’t want him to have her on, and I didn’t want to be in a two-shot with her,” she said, referring to the show's creator and producer Lorne Michaels. “Because I just said, ‘Well then that’s what they’ll show when I die. When I die that’s what they’ll show on the Emmys.' And they still might, but they’ll have to splice it.”

The show’s lampooning of President TrumpDonald John TrumpNew EPA rule would expand Trump officials' powers to reject FOIA requests Democratic senator introduces bill to ban gun silencers Democrats: Ex-Commerce aide said Ross asked him to examine adding census citizenship question MORE, featuring actor Alec Baldwin as the president, has made it a frequent target of his ire. In March, Trump called on the Federal Election Commission or Federal Communications Commission to investigate its mockery of him, apparently in response to a rerun.

"It’s truly incredible that shows like Saturday Night Live, not funny/no talent, can spend all of their time knocking the same person (me), over & over, without so much of a mention of 'the other side,' " he tweeted last month. "Like an advertisement without consequences."