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The real Hillary Clinton isn't talking about her emails, but her SNL alter ego is

For the past week, Hillary Clinton has been at the center of a media feeding frenzy over allegations that she used a personal email account while Secretary of State to avoid public scrutiny of her official communications. The real Clinton has been tight-lipped, but her Saturday Night Live alter ego, Kate McKinnon, took to the airwaves on Saturday to address the controversy.

McKinnon portrays Clinton as aloof, awkward, and power-obsessed. And these portrayals can have a big influence on a candidate's public image.

For example, Tina Fey's 2008 portrayal of Sarah Palin, with its famous line "I can see Russia from my house" helped cement a popular stereotype of Palin as folksy but not very bright. On the other hand, Will Ferrell's lovable portrayal of George W. Bush drove liberals nuts.

Understanding is critical

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