MoveOn.org, the social/political action website that hosts petitions against everything from Supreme Court decisions to Kylie Jenner’s hair, has announced that they will be holding a politically-themed comedy contest.
Started by comedian Nik Dodani and talent executive Randi Siegel, Laughter Trumps Hate is a competition in which stand-ups, sketch artists and impressionists will showcase their talents while also calling out Donald Trump and “the GOP’s politics of hate.” Entrants will submit videos online, and a select few will be chosen to perform at a a host of venues across the country in August, including Gotham Comedy Club in NYC, The Hollywood Improv in Los Angeles, and Zanies Comedy Club in Chicago. The events will have tables where folks can register to vote, sign up to canvas for a particular candidate, or simply volunteer their time.
The judges for the events are comedian Baratunde Thurston (formerly of The Daily Show), Beth Bigler (for Shiny Objects Entertainment at Lionsgate TV), and Conan Smith (TV/comedy agent) who will be judging via videos of the performances. The competition’s winner will be chosen both by the judges and a popular vote conducted through social media. The winners will receive a cash prize and may also become part of the Laughter Trumps Hate Task Force, which will apparently be producing political ads, sketch videos, stand-up sets and comedic petitions throughout the election season.
“Donald Trump’s campaign represents a clear and present danger to the very fabric of our nation. Trump has led a campaign fueled by racist, bigoted, xenophobic, misogynistic and violent rhetoric intent on dividing us,” said Ilya Sheyman, executive director of MoveOn.org Political Action. “But laughter brings people together and is often one of the most potent weapons against hate. That’s why we’re looking for a new generation of political comedians to challenge Donald Trump and the GOP’s policies of hate, bullying and bigotry.”