Speed Reads

Late Night Tackles Trump and Race

Stephen Colbert and Jimmy Kimmel offer some theories about Trump's attacks on Baltimore

The Late Show began Monday's show with an homage to Shark Week, "Great White Nationalist Week," starring — who else? — President Trump.

Shark Week turns 31 this year, Jimmy Kimmel said on Kimmel Live. "Of course, the most terrifying shark of all is the dreaded baby shark. Not only are your kids singing about 'em all day, soon they will be eating them, too," in Kellogg's newest sugar cereal. He recapped the story of a feral squirrel then pivoted: "Speaking of rodents, the president is on the attack yet again, lashing out at yet another coincidentally not-white member of Congress, Elijah Cummings, chairman of the House Oversight Committee."

Kimmel read some of Trump's more than a dozen tweets attacking Cummings and his district's biggest city, Baltimore. "What a thing to say about a city in America!" he said. "The man who tells us love-it-or-leave-it has now attacked more cities than Godzilla." Trump denied that his tweets are racist, arguing that Cummings is the real racist here. "Whatever you call him, he calls you back," Kimmel said. "'Racist? You're a racist!' 'I colluded? You colluded!' This must be fun for his doctors: 'I'm obese? You're obese!'" He ended with a theory involving The Wire and an amusing half-fake CNN preview of this week's still-overcrowded Democratic debates.

On The Late Show, Stephen Colbert approached Trump's Baltimore attacks "in our ongoing segment, 'Is Donald Trump Racist? Episode 3 ... million.' Previously on 'Is Donald Trump Racist?' — yes! But some people still aren't convinced."

"Trump sent out the usual suspects to defend him on the Sunday shows," Colbert said, applauding Fox News Sunday's Chris Wallace for shutting down acting White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney's rationalization, then grimacing at Mulvaney's comeback. "Wow! Pro tip: If you're trying to distance yourself from accusations of being a white supremacist, maybe don't use the excuse 'Donald Trump's not racist — he'd say the same thing about Jews!'" Watch below. Peter Weber