Speed Reads

Late Night Tackles 2017

Stephen Colbert shows he sometimes body-slams people asking him questions, too

On Wednesday, the Congressional Budget Office released its analysis of the House Republican health-care bill, and it no longer projects that 24 million fewer people will have health insurance in a decade — now it's only 23 million. "To put that in perspective," Stephen Colbert said on Thursday's Late Show, "if you lay 23 million people end-to-end, they would reach a country where you can get health care." The CBO also said the bill would raise premiums for older, poor Americans by as much as 850 percent, he noted. "So I think the GOP repealed and replaced your grandpa."

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R) says the Senate will start from scratch, since "I don't know how we get to 50" votes with the House version. Well, Colbert said, "if this passes, getting to 50 will also be the new lifespan goal."

"The CBO is already having a huge political impact," Colbert said, recapping Montana GOP congressional candidate Greg Gianforte body-slamming Guardian reporter Ben Jacobs, then playing the audio Jacobs captured of the altercation. "That's good reporting right there," Colbert said. "He knows there's no video, so he's narrating his own body-slam."

The election was Thursday (spoiler: Gianforte won), and the body-slamming was Wednesday night. "It's gotta be pretty damaging, I just don't know how anyone could vote for a candidate who body-slams people," Colbert deadpanned, cueing up a clip of President Trump body-slamming someone. "I forgot: Nothing matters. But that reporter may have gotten off easy." He played an actual commercial where Gianforte shot a computer screen, but ended up expressing fake sympathy for the congressman-elect, and showed that he, Stephen Colbert, has been known to body-slam interlocutors, too.

Meanwhile, the Russian investigation is still looming over Trump "like a congressman over an unconscious reporter," Colbert said. We now know that former FBI Director James Comey kept detailed notes of his questionable communications with the White House, and "news of these notes has some people freaking out," especially White House Chief of Staff Reince Priebus, he said. "The Comey note that Priebus is most worried about would've been written back in February," when Priebus reportedly called Comey and his deputy, Andrew McCabe, and asked them to "knock down" the reports of communications between Trump's associates and Russia. There is a Chumbawamba joke in there, and also a questionable Masterpiece Theatre one. You can watch below. Peter Weber