Protesters shouting “shut it down!” outside of NBC Studios didn’t stop viewers from tuning in to see controversial businessman and presidential hopeful Donald Trump host Saturday Night Live this weekend. Despite accusations of making racist and sexist comments, Trump boosted the sketch comedy’s ratings to its highest since January of 2012.
Per the LA Times, the episode received a 6.6. Neilsen rating and a 16% share of the TV audience for that night, delivering the strongest performance since Charles Barkley hosted nearly four years ago. The yellow-haired Republican candidate has faced a firestorm of criticism after referring to many Mexican immigrants as rapists. It also didn’t help that his immigration policy features mass deportation and a giant wall at the Mexican border.
After hearing that he would host an episode of the long-running series, Latino activists offered $5,000 to anyone who can interrupt the live taping. Their goal was accomplished but not in the way they might have expected. Instead of a fellow activist, Larry David heckled Trump during a planned skit.