Bowen Yang plays Santos as a victimized con man, singing a new rendition of Elton John’s “Candle in the Wind.”
Goodbye, Congress queen, they’ll never know anything about me at all because I lied about everything in my life. Then I took a tragic fall. They crawled out of the woodwork. They whispered, ‘He used my donations for Botox, and I said, it was filler, slut!‘
Santos was ousted Friday in a bipartisan vote of the House of Representatives, following the release of a devastating Ethics Committee report that accused him of stealing campaign funds for personal expenses, including spa treatments and OnlyFans.
The sketch opened with a takeoff on CNN’s The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer, with the anchor (Sarah Sherman) going to a Santos press conference at the Capitol.
In fact, Santos really did hold a defiant 8 a.m. press conference on Thursday, when he railed against the unfairness of being targeted by Congress and the media.
In the sketch, Santos complains, “Stop assaulting me. I am being assaulted. This entire country has been bullying me just because I am proud gay thief. What else is new? America hates to see a Latina queen winning.”
He goes on, “Since the day I was elected it has been a witch hunt. But if I am guilty of anything, it is for loving too much/fraud.”
Then he addresses the reporters at the press conference. “Now I am sure you bloodthirsty jackals in the media have a thousand, mean nasty questions you are dying to ask me.”
“You called this press conference,” a reporter reminds him. “No one asked you to do this.”
Santos responds, “Well, America needs closure. One of their favorite sons — me — has been cut down in the prime of his life at 17 years old.”
The real Santos already was the source of media attention when he took his congressional seat in January. By then, he had already admitted to fabricating portions of his resume, but as it turned out whole portions of his backstory had been made up. He quickly became the butt of jokes for his wild claims, including on an SNL sketch in January in which Santos (also played by Yang) boasts of being a football great.
Republicans initially resisted calls to oust Santos, given their slim majority, and instead referred more serious legal claims to the Ethics Committee. In the meantime, federal prosecutors indicted Santos on a series of charges, including wire fraud and identity theft. He has pleaded not guilty.
The SNL sketch at times lifted bits from the spectacle on Capitol Hill on Friday as Santos was being expelled, with Yang wearing a trenchcoat over his shoulders and telling reporters, “To hell with Congress. I don’t need them anyway.” (Santos actually said, “Why would I want to stay here? To hell with this place).
SNL, though, got in a few more digs at Santos’ fabrications. In the sketch, he tells reporters, “My new movie opened this weekend. It’s called Renaissance: A Film By Beyonce.”
“I terms of history, I know how I will be remembered, as a martyr, as a champion of the people. They’ll think of me as the modern Princess Diana and the modern Marilyn Monroe.”