BLACK VOICES

The Forgotten History Of Black Republicans

02/12/2015 11:20 am ET | Updated Feb 12, 2015

There is a fascinating Saturday Night Live sketch from 1980, a piece almost entirely forgotten by most viewers of the NBC comedy show. The sketch survives in the pop culture arena only because it features the SNL debut of comedian Eddie Murphy. Airing about a month after the country elected an ex-actor to the presidency (ousting a former Georgia peanut farmer in the process), the skit is a spoof of Mutual of Omaha’s Wild Kingdom, that unconventional animal wildlife series sponsored by an insurance company. In the SNL piece, a Jim Fowler–type zoologist braves the “savage” landscape of a tony Manhattan cocktail party in search of an elusive subject: the Negro Republican.

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