Liberal comedian Sacha Baron Cohen took aim at former President Donald Trump while performing as his alter-ego Borat at the Kennedy Center Honors on Sunday Night.
Baron Cohen took the stage in a tribute to rock band U2 as the infamous satirical Kazakhstani journalist Borat Sagdiyev, who he starred as in a 2007 mockumentary and the 2020 sequel that gleefully pranked American celebrities and politicians respectively.
“I am told the president of yours today is here. Where are you, Mr. Trump?” Borat questioned as cameras cut to President Biden and first lady Jill Biden, according to the Daily Mail.
“You don’t look so good,’ adding that ‘your big belly is gone. And your pretty orange skin has gone pale,” he continued.
“But I see you have a new wife. She is very erotic,” he joked. “I must look away before I get a Bono.”
Borat also gunned for disgraced rapper Kanye West, who has gone off the rails with antisemitic remarks in the past few weeks.
“I must say I am very upset about the antisemitism in USA. It is not fair,” Borat remarked in broken English. “Kazakhstan is number one Jew crushing nation. Stop stealing our hobby. Stop the steal. Stop the steal.”
West and white nationalist Nick Fuentes appeared on conspiracy-theorist Alex Jones’ InfoWars on Thursday, and the Yeezy CEO said that he likes Hitler and denied the Holocaust happened during the interview.
The same day, he announced his 2024 presidential campaign with an image of a swastika embedded into the Star of David.
He captioned the post: “YE24 Love everyone,” along with the hashtag #FreeSpeech.
Twitter CEO Elon Musk promptly booted West off of the social platform in response.
“I tried my best,” Musk tweeted. “Despite that, he again violated our rule against incitement to violence. Account will be suspended.”
“Your Kayne – he tried to move to Kazakhstan and even tried to change his name the Kazakhstan way. But we said. He’s too anti-semitic, even for us,” Borat added.
Baron Cohen’s green banana hammock wearing character was accused of antisemitism by the Anti Defamation League in 2007, but the comedian, who is Jewish and the grandson of a Holocaust survivor, explained that Borat is a tool to help lower people’s guard and expose their own prejudices.
In 2006, he said the character is a “dramatic demonstration of how racism feeds on dumb conformity, as much as rabid bigotry.”
Baron Cohen took aim at Rudy Giuliani in 2020’s Borat Subsequent Moviefilm, when the production pranked the former NYC Mayor by setting up a fake hotel interview with Borat’s 15-year-old daughter (played by a 24-year-old actress).
In the film, the actress reportedly untucked Giuliani’s shirt to retrieve his microphone pack, then he laid down on the bed and put his hands into his pants, presumably to tuck the shirt back in.
Borat then barreled through the door wearing women’s lingerie and told Giuliani that his daughter was only fifteen. “She’s too old for you,” Borat stated.
Giuliani said that the scene was a “hit job,” and explained that his shirt “came out a little,” but his clothes were “entirely” on.
“I leaned back, and I tucked my shirt in, and at that point, they have this picture they take, which looks doctored, but in any event, I’m tucking my shirt in. I assure you that’s all I was doing,” he commented.
Baron Cohen defended the prank with another attack on Giuliani in an interview with Good Morning America.
“I would say that if the president’s lawyer found what he did there appropriate behavior, then heaven knows what he’s done with other female journalists in hotel rooms,” he remarked.
“I just urge everyone to watch the movie, it is what it is. He did what he did.”