Speed Reads

Late Night Tackles 2020

Marianne Williamson and Stephen Colbert talk peace, love, Trump, and being the 'wacky' 2020 outsider

Stephen Colbert interviewed Marianne Williamson on Monday's Late Show, and he introduced her as an "activist, presidential candidate, and New York Times bestseller." Once seated, he asked her what makes her "different than the other 24 candidates who are running" for the Democratic nomination. "Well, in some of the policy positions, I think I'm very similar," Williamson said. "I'm a progressive, left-wing Democrat," though "I want to be an agent of change, I don't want to be an agent of chaos."

Williamson explained that her promotion of love wouldn't stop her from sending the U.S. military into war, but she wants a Department of Peace to make war less likely. The Pentagon has a $750 billion military budget, versus $40 billion for the State Department, which includes some "peacebuilding agencies," she said. "Our peacebuilders get less than $1 billion in the budget," and she would change that.

"Do you feel marginalized out there" during the debates? Colbert asked. "They're like, 'Oh, there's wacky Marianne Williamson, let's put her out there, out in the peace fields'?" "My placement on the podium is the least of the ways that I feel marginalized in this election," she said. "But I understand how it works, and I understand that there's a sort of political media industrial complex, and last time is was 'It has to be Bernie,' and this time it's 'Oh, it can be any of these four or five.' And I have a problem with that."

Williamson said it's silly to trust longtime politicians to save us from the political "ditch" politicians drove us into, and Colbert noted that like her, President Trump had business but no political experience. "The president's problem is not that he lacked political experience," she said. "The problem is that he lacks ethics and he seems to lack a visceral taste for democracy." Williamson ended with and expanded definition of political qualifications and fighting words for any 2020 rival who considers her a political amateur. Watch below. Peter Weber