March 3rd, 2010
03:15 PM ET
3 years ago

SNL alums reunite to push for consumer protection agency

(CNN) – It's enough to make a first term president have nightmares: a parade of past presidents all advocating that the current occupant of the Oval Office take action on a controversial reform measure in the wake of the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression.

That's exactly the conceit of a new Web video released Wednesday by comedy Web site Funny or Die.

In the video, President Obama, played by current Saturday Night Live cast member Fred Armisen, and the first lady, played by SNL alum Maya Rudolph, go to bed in the White House. As the fictional Obama drifts off to sleep, the clip turns into a dream sequence featuring a number of Obama's predecessors.

"We heard you were tossing and turning over whether to push for federal regulations so we're here to give you some advice," Saturday Night Live alum Darrell Hammond says, playing former President Bill Clinton.

"Yeah, what he said," says Will Ferrell, playing former President George W. Bush.

Ferrell and Hammond are joined by fellow SNL alum Dana Carvey who revives his classic portrayal of former President George H.W. Bush.

"We got a regulatory issue here and we got to regulate that or we're going to have more bubbles," Carvey says. "Sometimes you got to do the right thing," Carvey's fictional Bush 41 adds.

Dan Aykroyd plays former President Jimmy Carter: "Mr. President, you have to establish the Consumer Finance Protection Agency," Carter tells Obama.

And Chevy Chase revives his accident-prone imitation of former President Gerald Ford.

Former President Ronald Reagan is played by Jim Carrey, the only actor in the clip who was not a Saturday Night Live cast member.

"I hope this little talk has helped," a fictional Reagan tells a fictional Obama.

After Armisen awakes from the dream sequence, a message appears on screen that includes a Web address and a phone number: "The banks have millions of dollars to spend to get their message out but your speech is free," an announcer says. "Contact your senators about the CFPA ..."

The Web video was produced by Funny or Die in association with Americans for Financial Reform, a coalition of organizations pushing for financial regulatory reform.

The Obama administration's plans to pass a financial reform bill have been stalled in the Senate, in part, because of an impasse over the details of a new consumer protection agency favored by Democrats.

Follow Martina Stewart on Twitter: @MMStewartCNN


Filed under: Economy
soundoff (12 Responses)
  1. Bob in Pa

    The Consumer Finance Protection Agency, more regulations that will cause us more grief than the last set of consumer credit card protections they created. Does anyone have a fixed percentage rate on any of their cards ? I just love having a 15% + variable rate instead of my 9.9% fixed – Thank You so Much Congressmen, Senators and Mr. Obama. I can't wait untill you screw me again.

    March 3, 2010 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  2. vincent watson

    obama is a complete and utter idiot. may a republican win the next
    election and consign the democrats to the trashcan of history.

    March 3, 2010 03:39 pm at 3:39 pm |
  3. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA

    I can't wait to see it. Sounds like it's hilarious. I'm sure it's alot funnier to watch though.

    March 3, 2010 04:00 pm at 4:00 pm |
  4. A. Smith, Oregon

    With consumer protection virtually missing during the infamous Bush-Cheney administration, it's a ongoing battle to return inspectors and oversight agency's to make certain America's children are not totally contaminated by toxic lead, that our toothpaste contains no anti-freeze and our pets are not dieing from chemical hazardous waste contamination.

    The Republican lawmakers remove existing consumer protection and safety inspectors, the Democratic lawmakers do their best to replace them and return funding to those agency's the Republican lawmakers gutted.

    March 3, 2010 04:12 pm at 4:12 pm |
  5. ThinkAgain

    The video makes a good point, although the pace is a little flat.

    Dana Carvey is the brightest spot!

    That said, we need consumer protection now more than ever – before the next bubble inflates.

    March 3, 2010 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
  6. Greg K., PA

    This video was not only hilarious, but brutally pointed. It's ridiculous that an agency that looks out for consumers is controversial at all. Banks have run the show for centuries; it's high time government looked out for the interests of the People instead of the interests of the politicians' corporate donors.

    March 3, 2010 04:32 pm at 4:32 pm |
  7. John

    Yes we need a consumer protection agency and pay for it with a tax on the corporations that are ripping off Americans every day.

    We also need Health Care reform now without the republicans obstruction.

    I can still hear the shrill voice of that weeny Senator Mitch McConnell – "We need an up or down vote" – well if it was good for the republicans under King George W Bush, It is good now on a matter of National importance.

    The republicans and their media affiliates like FOX News (or is that FIXED NEWS?) are totally in bed with the Insurance Industry ripping off the American public. Republicans reading the Insurance Industry Script and FOX news and others repeating it like it was fact!

    Let's regain our democracy and let the "majority rule" – we need a Up or Down vote now.

    March 3, 2010 04:41 pm at 4:41 pm |
  8. America First

    Hilarious! But, with a serious message that President Obama is stuck cleaning up the messes left by former presidents and that he needs to act strongly in doing the right thing with or without the GOP on board.

    March 3, 2010 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
  9. Larry

    Impasse? Do the republicans believe the financial industry is doing just fine regulating itself?

    This, IMHO, is akin to not playing in the Super Bowl just because the coach makes you were a differnt # on your jersey. Messed up priorities!

    March 3, 2010 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
  10. b

    Funny stuff! But scary too.

    March 3, 2010 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
  11. JDD

    Sorry – Is this a news article?

    Because it reads like a lobbyist ad.

    March 3, 2010 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  12. John

    SNL alums reunite to push for consumer protection agency

    I can guess how the coneheads of the GOP will reply:

    "Consumer safety protection isn't necessary. No agencies are needed. Just trust that markets will self-correct without any needless interference by government watchdogs."

    March 3, 2010 04:52 pm at 4:52 pm |