President Trump was in New York City on Wednesday, having dinner with supporters — "well, it's New York, so 'supporter,'" Stephen Colbert joked on The Late Show. "Bon appétit, Sean Hannity." But the big story is that "Trump is calling the one informant that the FBI used to find out if the Trump campaign was colluding with the Russian government 'a nest of spies,'" he added. "The reviews are in on his new thriller," and they are not glowing. "But today, Trump gave his conspiracy a nickname," Colbert said, and he wasn't unimpressed.
Spygate? "A, a criminal investigation is not 'spying' — it should be 'Investigate-gate,'" Colbert said. "And B, 'Spygate' has already been used, twice — once to describe the public identification of Valerie Plame as a CIA officer, and for the New England Patriots videotaping of New York Jets coaches' signals. Well, as long as we're just stealing other scandals' names, from now on Watergate is the fact that Trump can't drink one-handed." Trump tweeted about his "made-up spy thing," too, Colbert said, and he read some of the nuttier tweets.
"Yes, follow Trump down the rabbit hole here," Colbert said. "They embedded a spy early on and paid him massive sums of money to sabotage the Trump campaign with false claims of Russian collusion in the press to help Hillary Clinton win, and then — and here's the insidious part — they didn't tell the press and Hillary Clinton lost, so when Trump revealed this plot he would seem like a desperate criminal spinning conspiracy theories to stop the walls from closing in! Nice try, Deep State!" He ended with a few caustic thoughts on Trump's call for nonpartisan transparency, ending with this zinger: "I give him this — we are getting transparency, because it is easy to see through that bulls--t." Watch below. Peter Weber
Stephen Colbert explains why Trump's meddling in the Trump investigation isn't technically a 'constitutional crisis'
Tuesday was another milestone "on Trump's highway to American greatness," because President Trump "has ordered the people investigating him to investigate their investigation of him," Stephen Colbert said on The Late Show. "Some people are calling this a constitutional crisis, but I don't know about that. A constitutional crisis technically requires that one branch of the government push back against another branch of the government. Everybody here is pushing in the same direction, and it's down — with a pillow over the Constitution's face, going 'Shhhhh, it'll be over soon.'"
Colbert ran the story back to May 2016, read Trump's recent tweets about a "spy" in his campaign, and returned to Monday's high-stakes White House meeting with Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein and FBI Director Christopher Wray, where Trump pushed them to divulge classified information about a covert U.S. intelligence asset. "And here's the thing: They're gonna do it. They're gonna show the evidence to congressional Republicans — and no Democrats — but it's not political, it's all perfectly innocent, according to Trump lawyer and man seeing the evidence against Donald Trump, Rudy Giuliani."
Giuliani said Trump is acting not in his capacity as subject of the investigation but as president. "Yes, Donald Trump is kind of wearing two hats in this investigation," Colbert said. "One is president, the other is criminal." You can see an image of both hats below.
But The Late Show has one way to short-circuit this crisis — it has found Trump's "mole." Peter Weber
Jimmy Kimmel congratulates Trump on 1 year of the Mueller 'Witch Hunt,' and Seth Meyers throws up his hands
"Today is the one-year anniversary of Collusiapallooza," Jimmy Kimmel said on Thursday's Kimmel Live, "and our president had a special message on Twitter this morning to celebrate that fact," congratulating America on entering "the second year of the greatest Witch Hunt in American History." "Congrats to you, too, old pal, we've come a long way," Kimmel said. "When he started with 'Congratulations America,' I was hoping he would end with 'I quit,' but no."
"It was a big day — Robert Mueller had a bouquet of long-stem subpoenas delivered to the White House," Kimmel said, but his own present was a reel of Trump saying "witch hunt" in a surprising variety of public settings.
Trump's personal lawyer is also in the news, facing new allegations that he solicited a $1 million bribe from Qatar — unsuccessfully. "Michael Cohen's like the human version of every failed product on Shark Tank — he's the worst!" Kimmel said. "I mean, who does that kind of thing?" (Guillermo.)
On Late Night, Seth Meyers dug into some other things Cohen has been up to (allegedly), Rudy Giuliani's various face-plants, and other news from the fire hose we're all drinking from. "Can I just say, whenever they make a movie about all this, it is gonna suck," he said, "because it will never be as crazy as the real thing." Watch below for the Cops homage. Peter Weber
Stephen Colbert recaps what we learned about Trump and Russia on the Mueller probe's 1st anniversary
Thursday marked the one-year anniversary of Special Counsel Robert Mueller's Trump-Russia investigation, and The Late Show had a gift idea.
Stephen Colbert said his "happy one-year anniversary of the Mueller investigation" present was this monologue, but "the Senate gave us all something big yesterday," 2,500 pages of testimony about that June 9, 2016, Trump Tower meeting between Donald Trump Jr., other top Trump campaign officials, and Russians promising dirt on Hillary Clinton.
President Trump and his eldest son have both insisted the president did not know about the now-infamous meeting, Colbert said, "but the transcript of his testimony shows that after Don Jr. set up this meeting, with help from a Russian oligarch's son — as you do when you're not colluding — he immediately made a four-minute mystery call to a blocked number, and earlier testimony revealed that candidate Trump's primary residence has a blocked number." Don Jr. told the Senate he couldn't recall who he'd called. "Sure," Colbert said, "he could have been speaking to anybody between two calls to a Russian oligarch's son planning to collude with the Russian government. 'Hello, Dominos? You'll never guess who has dirt on Hillary Clinton.'"
"Prior to these transcripts coming out, the Trump team had planned to use this anniversary as a turning point in their campaign to end Mueller's probe," Colbert said. The man tasked with that job, Rudy Giuliani, didn't convince Colbert, but Colbert conceded that Giuliani did have a point about Mueller being unable to indict Trump. "The Justice Department has held they can't indict a sitting president since the Nixon administration, and that was reaffirmed in the Clinton administration," he said. "Yes, our two most innocent presidents. 'I am not a crook!' and 'I did not have sexual relations with that woman' has now become 'I am a crook, and I did have sexual relations with that woman, and you can suck it!' I'm paraphrasing." Watch below. Peter Weber
On Wednesday night, Stephen Colbert wished a happy first birthday to Special Counsel Robert Mueller's investigation of President Trump and Russian collusion. "The first anniversary is traditionally the paper anniversary, and with any luck that is what Mueller is going to be serving Donald Trump with," he joked on The Late Show. He ran down some ways Trump is apparently "freaking out" about the investigation, including complaining about the FBI at least 20 times a day, lashing out in aggrieved anger, and pining for better "TV lawyers," a notion Colbert had a little fun with.
But while Trump fumes, some Trump aides are "quietly launching his re-election campaign," Colbert said, puzzled. "Why would you launch it quietly? Don't you want people to know? That's like quietly launching a search party." He had some other thoughts on Trump's nascent re-election effort, including a pretty good imitation of dial-up internet.
The White House still hasn't apologized for a staffer's inappropriately macabre comment on Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), so The Late Show offered some trollish ideas for White House apology cards.
And speaking of trolls, Colbert was pretty skeptical of Twitter's new rules to quash uncivil tweets, and a little jazzed about prom season. "That means young love, stretch limousines, and controversy," he said, focusing on the Miami high school that had a live caged tiger at the big dance. "Bringing a live tiger to prom? The only way that could be more Florida is if a shirtless guy rode it into the Taco Bell drive-thru." And he had some questions: "Was it there with a date? Did it do a promposal, with a sign: 'Hey Karen, I may be a tiger but I ain't lyin' when I say I want to go to prom with you — then eat you.'" Watch below. Peter Weber
Stephen Colbert bids a sad farewell to favorite Trump lawyer Ty Cobb, arches an eyebrow at his replacement
President Trump's mustachioed White House lawyer Ty Cobb is stepping down at the end of the month. "He plans to spend more time with his family — of talking mice who live in his magical clockwork mansion," Stephen Colbert joked on Wednesday's Late Show. "And Trump has already found a replacement for Cobb," Emmet Flood, most famous for representing Bill Clinton during his impeachment proceedings. Colbert raised an eyebrow and assumed Trump voice: "The crooked Clintons are the most corrupt people in the world — get me their lawyer."
Leaving Trump's employ is "a blessing" for Cobb, but "I'm sorry to say that Cobb is leaving," Colbert added, having one last go at elaborate descriptors for Cobb. "In honor of my favorite lawyer in the whole Trumpiverse, we're going to send his mustache to the rafters via hot air ballon," he said, and did.
And in case you didn't get enough of Trump's various ways of introducing Cobb, The Late Show lovingly rounded them up. Watch below. Peter Weber
Stephen Colbert, Seth Meyers, Jordan Klepper have some questions about Mueller's 49 questions for Trump
On Monday night, The New York Times printed a list of 49 questions Special Counsel Robert Mueller wants to ask President Trump. On Tuesday's Late Show, Stephen Colbert protested. "Oh come on, don't print them! If Trump sees the questions in advance, he'll cheat." Trump's lawyers wrote the question based on information from Mueller, and Trump says he's furious that the questions leaked, blaming it on Mueller's team. That's unlikely, given the grammatical errors in the questions, among other clues, as a former Mueller aide pointed out to CNN.
Colbert read through Trump's angry tweets, with commentary, then said that he's looked over "the 49 questions that Mueller has for Trump, and they barely scratch the surface of what I want to know. So I'd like to submit some additional questions for Mueller to ask the president." One of them involves math.
On Late Night, Seth Meyers said that Trump likely has some questions for Mueller, too, and he listed some. Like: "If I catch Jeff Sessions, do I get to keep his pot of gold?"
At The Opposition, Jordan Klepper — like Sean Hannity, except joking — was incensed. "I always knew Mueller would come for Trump with knives," he said. "And by knives, I mean questions that were shared in advance with his legal team as a courtesy." And none of the questions "are multiple choice, true or false, or click on all of the pictures that include a car questions," he added. "This is totally unfair — you can't ask Trump open-ended questions. Fox & Friends asked him what he got Melania for her birthday, and he talked for 30 minutes. And the answer was 'nothing.'" Watch below. Peter Weber
Lawyers for President Trump and his lawyer/fixer, Michael Cohen, were in court Monday, asking a federal judge to let them see files the FBI seized from Cohen before federal prosecutors get a chance. "And the judge said, and I quote, 'Heh heh no,'" Stephen Colbert said on Tuesday's Late Show. "Cohen is in all sorts of shady dealings — Shady Dealings, by the way, the next porn star," allegedly, Colbert said, and sources say that even Trump and people at the Trump Organization don't really know about all of Cohen's deals.
Porn star Stormy Daniels, who was also at Monday's court hearing, released a sketch on Tuesday of the man she says threatened her to keep quiet about her purported affair with Trump. "There he is, the man who threatened her," Colbert said, showing the sketch: "The love child of Willem Dafoe, Tom Brady, and Bon Jovi." He even had some video of the guy.
Kendrick Lamar's Pulitzer for his rap opus Damn "is a really big deal, because it's the first non-classical, non-jazz Pulitzer Prize winner in history," Colbert said. "So it's official: Rap is dead. It's now going to be destroyed by college poetry professors with the elbow patches." That led to that Wu-Tang Clan album that pharma bro Martin Shkreli bought the only copy of for $2 million.
"Unfortunately, Shkreli came down with an acute case of goingtojail, so he was forced to turn the album over to the Department of Justice, which means that, believe it or not, the forfeited Wu-Tang album is now in Jeff Sessions' hands," Colbert said. "He could be staring at the album cover right now, trying to figure out how there are nine black men he hasn't put in jail yet." He brought out his Keebler-sized Sessions to ask him what he plans to do with the album, but Method Man and Ghostface Killah had other plans. Watch below. Peter Weber