Stephen Colbert and Trevor Noah think Rick Gates is faring much better than Paul Manafort in court

Stephen Colbert, Trevor Noah recap Day 6 of Manafort trial
(Image credit: Screenshots/YouTube/The Late Show, The Daily Show)

Stephen Colbert began Tuesday's Late Show by wishing Special Counsel Robert Mueller a happy birthday. "Blow out the candles and make our wish," he said, wistfully. Mueller's team is "hammering" Paul Manafort, President Trump's former campaign chairman, and "Manafort is getting buried on the witness stand" by his former partner and protege, Rick Gates, Colbert said, though Gates confessed some crimes of his own — committed both with and against Manafort. On Tuesday, Gates detailed how Manafort allegedly evaded paying taxes, used the phrase WTF, and apparently tried to reward $16 million in bank "loans" with a job as Trump's Army secretary.

But things got "real Law & Order-y" when Manafort's lawyer cross-examined Gates, getting him to admit to ... an extramarital affair 10 years ago, Colbert said. "Oh my God! That's all they've got on him? Our president has had multiple extramarital affairs — that's how he met two-thirds of his wives!" He went on to examine the continuing fallout from Trump's Russia meeting "tweetfession," Rudy Giuliani's cigarette-fueled Twitter feud with Fox News "moron" Jonah Goldberg, and Donald Trump Jr.'s strategically muted chat with Laura Ingraham.

As Manafort's longtime right-hand man, Gates "knows where the bodies are buried," and he's digging them up, Trevor Noah said on The Daily Show. "Every moment that Gates was on the stand, things just got worse and worse" for his ex-boss. "Manafort must have been so mad, but also at the same time so proud," he said. "Because on the one hand, Gates stole money from him, but on the other hand he clearly learned everything that Manafort taught him."

Subscribe to The Week

Escape your echo chamber. Get the facts behind the news, plus analysis from multiple perspectives.


Sign up for The Week's Free Newsletters

From our morning news briefing to a weekly Good News Newsletter, get the best of The Week delivered directly to your inbox.

From our morning news briefing to a weekly Good News Newsletter, get the best of The Week delivered directly to your inbox.

Sign up

"So as it stands, Mueller seems to have a tight case, Manafort's partner in crime has turned on him," and the biggest outstanding question is: "Why isn't Manafort snitching on Trump?" Noah asked. "It turns out Manafort has a plan-afort." It involves a pardon. Watch below. Peter Weber

Continue reading for free

We hope you're enjoying The Week's refreshingly open-minded journalism.

Subscribed to The Week? Register your account with the same email as your subscription.