Trump fires back at comedian Alec Baldwin, who responds with comeback on Twitter
Baldwin, a Democratic activist, won an Emmy Award for his parody of the president on Saturday Night Live
U.S. President Donald Trump and Alec Baldwin — his chief impersonator — traded online barbs Friday, describing each other as causing "agony," the latest salvos in an ongoing feud between the commander in chief and the actor.
Trump, who has long grumbled about the way he is portrayed by Baldwin on Saturday Night Live, began the latest spat in a tweet sandwiched between his observations about world trade and the opioid crisis. (In an initial tweet that was later deleted, he misspelled the actor's first name as Alex, prompting Alex Baldwin to trend on Twitter.)
Alec Baldwin, whose dying mediocre career was saved by his terrible impersonation of me on SNL, now says playing me was agony. Alec, it was agony for those who were forced to watch. Bring back Darrell Hammond, funnier and a far greater talent!—@realDonaldTrump
The president seemed to be reacting to an interview Baldwin gave to the Hollywood Reporter that was published Thursday in which the actor said he doesn't enjoy parodying Trump: "Every time I do it now, it's like agony. Agony. I can't."
Trump wrote on Friday: "Alec Baldwin, whose dying mediocre career was saved by his terrible impersonation of me on SNL, now says playing me was agony. Alec, it was agony for those who were forced to watch."
In a final dig, the president said Baldwin's performance wasn't as good as comedian Darrell Hammond, who portrayed Trump on Saturday Night Live for years before Baldwin took over in September 2016. "Bring back Darrell Hammond, funnier and a far greater talent!" Trump tweeted.
Baldwin responded in a series of tweets.
"Agony though it may be, I'd like to hang in there for the impeachment hearings, the resignation speech, the farewell helicopter ride," he wrote.
The comedian tweeted he was looking forward to the Trump presidential library, which would include a putting green, recipes for chocolate cake and a little black book for porn stars. (He also misspelled Trump's Florida estate Mar-a-Lago as Mara-A-Lago.)
Baldwin, who was among the top 10 trending topics on Twitter in Canada on Friday morning, also asked Trump to ask his wife to stop calling him for SNL tickets.
Agony though it may be, I’d like to hang in there for the impeachment hearings, the resignation speech, the farewell helicopter ride to Mara-A-Lago. You know. The Good Stuff. That we’ve all been waiting for.—@ABFalecbaldwin
Looking forward to the Trump Presidential Library.<br>A putting green.<br>Recipes for chocolate cake.<br>A live Twitter feed for visitors to post on.<br>A little black book w the phone numbers of porn stars.<br>You’re in and out in five minutes.<br>Just like...—@ABFalecbaldwin
And Mr President...<br>please ask your wife to stop calling me for SNL tickets.<br>(Hey, Melania...we’ve got Charles Barkley this Saturday!)—@ABFalecbaldwin
SNL more culturally relevant
Last year, Baldwin, a Democratic activist, received an Emmy Award for his parody on Saturday Night Live.
He and Trump, who appeared as a guest host on SNL in November 2015, have attacked each other on Twitter before. In 2016, the then president elect called a skit that satirized Trump's tweets as "sad," prompting Baldwin to respond: "Release your tax returns and I'll stop. Ha."
Trump also complained to then NBC Today host Matt Lauer in an interview that year that Baldwin's portrayal of him wasn't funny. (Lauer was fired in November after a female colleague accused him of inappropriate sexual behaviour.)
"The skits are terrible. I like Alec, but his imitation of me is really mean-spirited and not very good … It's very biased and I don't like it," Trump told Lauer at the time.
Baldwin and Trump also exchanged sharp tweets after the election when the president-elect called Saturday Night Live a "totally one-sided, biased show" and asked, "Equal time for us?" Baldwin responded: "Election is over. There is no more equal time."
Saturday Night Live has found higher ratings and more cultural relevance since Trump ran for office, with skits that have also lampooned Oval Office figures, such as Sarah Huckabee Sanders, Jeff Sessions, Sean Spicer, Steve Bannon, Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump.
Five days before his 2017 inauguration, Donald Trump tweeted about the show: "Not funny, cast is terrible, always a complete hit job. Really bad television!"