Speed Reads

Late Night Tackles President Trump

Stephen Colbert uses pop culture to explain how Russian trolls helped Trump win with 'real fake news'

This week's confirmation vote on President Trump's Supreme Court nominee, Neil Gorsuch, could forever change the Senate. "Democrats aren't going to let Gorsuch get confirmed without a fight — sure, it's a fight they're going to lose, but those are the kind of fights Democrats love," Stephen Colbert explained on Monday's Late Show, looking a bit confused when the audience clapped loudly. Democrats now have enough no votes to filibuster Gorsuch, but if they do, Senate Republicans have threatened to use the "nuclear option," he explained, "which would upset Donald Trump, because he wants to be the first to use the nuclear option, possibly against North Korea, maybe Jake Tapper."

Some people argue that the Senate shouldn't confirm any of Trump's nominees until the end of the investigations into his team's possible collusion with Russia, Colbert said, pivoting fairly seamlessly to new developments on Trump and Russia. "It turns out the most effective thing that Russia did was change public opinion through targeted social media," using 1,000 trolls spreading "fake news" to Americans in key states, Colbert said. "Now, when I say 'fake news,' this is real fake news, not fake fake news that is real news that Donald Trump just doesn't like."

He explained how the army of Russian trolls and their bots apparently worked: "If enough people say something is popular, I might trust that it's good. It's like how if one person tells me Transformers is a good movie, I might not see it, but if everyone on Facebook is raving about it, I'll go. And by the time I realize I was lied to, Megatron is president."

Colbert ran through other news from Trumpworld, including Michael Flynn's request for immunity from prosecution ("So the question is, what does he know about Donald Trump? And: How could it be worse than what we know about Donald Trump?"), Trump walking out of an executive order signing ceremony without signing any executive orders ("That's the entire reason you're there! It's like going out to dinner and then ordering just the check") and Jared Kushner being sent to Iraq ("He wanted to go somewhere with less sectarian violence than the White House"). Watch below for all that and Colbert's imitation of Sean Spicer, landlord. Peter Weber