Jodi Kantor and Megan Twohey tell Stephen Colbert about bringing down Weinstein, why Trump survived #MeToo

Jodi Kantor and Megan Twohey discuss MeToo with Stephen Colbert
(Image credit: Screenshot/YouTube/The Late Show)

New York Times reporters Jodi Kantor and Megan Twohey won a Pulitzer Prize for their giant-toppling reporting on Harvey Weinstein's sexual misconduct, one of the #MeToo lodestars they detail in their new book, She Said. "When you went to publish that original article, did you know what was coming in its wake?" Stephen Colbert asked them on Tuesday's Late Show. "We had no idea," Twohey said.

Kantor explained they decided to write their book because "a lot of what originally happened in this investigation was off the record, so we needed to go back and find a way to share those secrets" and let people witness "the final confrontations with Harvey Weinstein." Colbert asked for details, and Twohey ran through some of the threats and bounties, ending when Weinstein, in the 11th hour, "basically barged into The New York Times himself."

Colbert asked about criticisms that the #MeToo movement has sometimes gone too far. "What we've seen in our reporting is that there's a kind of mounting sense of unfairness on both sides, and actually, I don't think anybody feels that our system works for the accused or the accusers," Kantor said. She laid out the three big questions she sees as unresolved: What kind of behavior merits #MeToo sanctions, how do you discern the truth of what happened, and what's the just punishment? "And the answers to all three are..." Colbert asked. "Clearly, we're going to settle this right here and right now," Kantor deadpanned.

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The #MeToo movement has felt like "a nonviolent revolution," Colbert said. "Why hasn't that revolution swept up in any way a man who's been accused 17 times, credibly, of sexual assault, Donald Trump? Why is he untouched by any of this?"

"Jodi and I have spent a lot of time wondering about why certain stories stick and why they don't," Twohey said, "and what we've found is, time and again, when these allegations push into the political realm — whether it's a Democrat, whether it's a Republican, whether it's Trump over the years — they quickly descend into holy war, and oftentimes the women basically are almost forgotten as both political sides go to war against each other." Watch below. Peter Weber

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