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Adam Sandler as Opera Man. File photo: Dana Edelson/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images

Adam Sandler returned to "Saturday Night Live" — and he brought his SNL character Opera Man with him to roast President Trump, Democratic presidential front-runner Joe Biden and other 2020 hopefuls.

Why it matters: It was Sandler's first appearance as SNL host, and he marked it with fellow former cast member Chris Rock to jab at the show with a song about being fired.

Details: SNL mostly stayed away from politics, as it opened with a "Family Feud" parody involving the "Game of Thrones" and Avengers casts. Jimmy Fallon and Kristen Wiig returned for a "Sandler family Reunion" segment. Sandler also sent up CNN in an imaginary report with SnapChat filters. And he closed the program with a moving musical tribute to the late "Saturday Night Live" star Chris Farley.

Go deeper

9 hours ago - World

Maximum pressure campaign escalates with Fakhrizadeh killing

Photo: Fars News Agency via AP

The assassination of Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, the architect of Iran’s military nuclear program, is a new height in the maximum pressure campaign led by the Trump administration and the Netanyahu government against Iran.

Why it matters: It exceeds the capture of the Iranian nuclear archives by the Mossad, and the sabotage in the advanced centrifuge facility in Natanz.

Scoop: Biden weighs retired General Lloyd Austin for Pentagon chief

Lloyd Austin testifying before Congress in 2015. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Joe Biden is considering retired four-star General Lloyd Austin as his nominee for defense secretary, adding him to a shortlist that includes Jeh Johnson, Tammy Duckworth and Michele Flournoy, two sources with direct knowledge of the decision-making tell Axios.

Why it matters: A nominee for Pentagon chief was noticeably absent when the president-elect rolled out his national security team Tuesday. Flournoy had been widely seen as the likely pick, but Axios is told other factors — race, experience, Biden's comfort level — have come into play.

Updated 11 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Health: WHO: AstraZeneca vaccine must be evaluated on "more than a press release."
  2. Politics: Supreme Court backs religious groups on New York COVID restrictions.
  3. World: Thailand, Philippines sign deal with AstraZeneca for vaccine.
  4. Economy: Safety nets to disappear in December Black Friday shopping across the U.S., in photosAmazon hires 1,400 workers a day throughout pandemic.
  5. Education: National standardized tests delayed until 2022.