Dissent-shaming is a thing, right? Well, if not, it should be, and there certainly was ample opportunity for it on the first day of the Democratic national convention. By the time Al Franken and Sarah Silverman took the stage, though, vocal dissent had largely dissipated, and after a couple of minutes of their act, so had the energy in the crowd. With Paul Simon having technical issues, Franken and Silverman had to stretch out their act, and the two comedians painfully attempt to do so. Finally, Silverman filled the time by scolding Bernie Sanders supporters for refusing to unite behind Hillary:
So much for “the power of comedy,” as Franken puts it after channeling his inner Brandt from The Big Lebowski:
Why was Silverman on stage at all, and especially paired with Franken, who has spent the last several years distancing himself from his comedy career in order to protect his political standing? None of this worked, except to slow down the program. Worse, Silverman threw gasoline on an already-dying fire, causing one more embarrassment to the DNC before the major speeches began.
Silverman had one fan, at least. Team Hillary chair John Podesta told CBS This Morning that she was right to scold Sanders’ holdouts:
“So, I think we began that process last night, I think that as Sarah Silverman said … we’ve got to get over it.”
Podesta added that the party took the opportunity to honor Sanders’s campaign on Monday night, “but we need to move on and consolidate around Hillary.”
“I’ve worked for insurgent candidates, I know what that feels like, and … right now I think they’re emotional about it, they thought they fought the good cause, but Hillary Clinton won the nomination fair and square, and tonight is an historic night because we will nominate the first woman to lead a major party ticket,” Podesta said.
Being chewed out by a flailing comedian is the way to “get over it”? The power of comedy compels you! The power of comedy compels you! Good luck with that.