In the first episode of “Saturday Night Live” since the election of Donald Trump as the next president, the show took a rather muted approach. With Kate McKinnon in a Hillary Clinton-style white pantsuit, the show also paid tribute to singer Leonard Cohen, who died Monday at age 82.
Sitting behind a piano, McKinnon sang and played Cohen’s signature “Hallelujah,” fighting back tears throughout the performance. And at its end, she turned directly to the camera and said: “I’m not giving up, and neither should you.”
McKinnon has been central to “SNL” this election cycle, playing the Democratic presidential candidate opposite Alec Baldwin’s Trump. Because the show typically opens with a skit, the decision to open the show with a political message in this way was unexpected. It also might have been necessary considering how divisive the election has been, with protests erupting throughout the country and demonstrators gathering under the slogan #NotMyPresident.
See McKinnon’s performance below:
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