From the polarized reaction, you would think that the President had just named a Supreme Court nominee. But it was the president of the Academy that named an Oscar host: Eddie Murphy. A good choice, for these reasons.
Murphy, like the most successful Oscar hosts of the modern era (Billy Crystal, Whoopi Goldberg, Steve Martin), possesses these attributes. He comes from stand-up and can take the temperature of the audience. He has enjoyed success in movies. He is both of the industry and can make fun of it (unlike David Letterman, Chris Rock and Jon Stewart, perceived outsiders).
Thoughts on the choice to pin the Oscars on the Donkey?