Late Night Tackles Trump Tweets
June 10, 2020

The nationwide protests against George Floyd's murder and police brutality in black communities are now "squarely in the American mainstream," Stephen Colbert said on Tuesday's Late Show, pointing to a new Washington Post poll in which 74 percent of Americans — and 53 percent of Republicans — support the protests. "What has taken a hit in popularity are monuments to America's racist history, like Confederate statues and Donald Trump."

Trump's considering giving a speech on race, but "we may have gotten a little preview of Trump's sensitive approach to police violence" when he "weighed in on Buffalo police violently pushing an elderly protester," Martin Gugino, Colbert said. "Trump is trying to demonize the man because he knows he has to convince all the old white voters that he needs to get re-elected not to sympathize with Gugino — which is a tall order, because it turns out Martin Gugino is a pretty sympathetic character."

The Late Show played out Trump's conspiracy theory to its absurd conclusion.

"It takes a special kind of monster to see a peaceful 75-year-old man shoved to the ground by police so hard he bleeds from the ears and take the side of the concrete," but Trump isn't alone, Jimmy Kimmel said. Republican National Committee spokeswoman Elizabeth Harrington "posted a completely nutty conspiracy theory" claiming Gugino "was using prop blood attached to an elaborate device." They're claiming "a 75-year-old man was using his cellphone to scan police communication equipment in order to black it out," he recapped. "I feel like anyone who's tried to Zoom with their grandparents knows there's no possible way that's true."

"While Democrats are proposing legislation to reform the police," The Daily Show's Trevor Noah said, "Trump is so desperate to defend the police that instead of admitting that maybe they used excessive force and that none of them helped a person who was bleeding out on the ground, he turns around and blames the old man from that video for being an 'antifa provocateur' who bashed his head open on purpose? ... That is some bats--t crazy theory."

Trump "tweeted that?" Late Night's Seth Meyers sighed. ""That's not for Twitter. That kind of insanity clearly belongs on Facebook. You know what this means — for the next few days, all 52 Republican senators are going to be hiding in Trump's bunker. 'Oh, we can't see tweets down here, too dark!'" Watch below. Peter Weber

May 28, 2020

"It seems like every day we're learning something new while we're in quarantine," Jimmy Kimmel said on Wednesday's Kimmel Live. For instance, "did you know Hitler had an alligator? Well, he did, and now that alligator is dead."

"The president and his space poodle were in Florida today for the big NASA/SpaceX launch — this would have been the first time ever that a private company sent astronauts into orbit, which would have been a big deal," Kimmel said. "Unfortunately, the mission had to be scrubbed at the last minute due to weather. ... People online are blaming the president for jinxing this thing because he showed up to see it, just like they say he jinxed Alabama by showing up their home game, or how he's jinxed everything he's ever touched, but this is not his fault."

"It's been an all-caps kind of week for our dear mis-leader — Twitter yesterday, for the first time ever, flagged his tweets as potentially misleading," Kimmel said. "I guess this is good, but I don't know. Do we really need Twitter to tell us our fake president tweets fake things? Is that their job? The president, of course, was displeased. He took to Twitter to lash out at Twitter." He read Trump's tweetrum and said he wasn't sure what it meant.

"I guess it was only a matter of time before Donald Trump would be in a Twitter feud with Twitter," Kimmel said. "But this new kick he's on, trying to stop voting-by-mail, is actually very scary, because it's pretty clear he's setting the stage to claim he was cheated if he loses the election, which could potentially result in real violence in this country. And to help him push our democracy toward the edge of a cliff, Kellyanne Conway spoke to reporters today to say: pandemic, schmandemic, real American voters wait in line." At least for cupcakes.

Late Night's Seth Meyers presented a cartoon mashup of Trump's family quarantine and The Shining, and you can watch that below. Peter Weber

July 12, 2019

President Trump "rolled out the orange carpet for a hangout with all his favorite wingnuts" on Thursday, Jimmy Kimmel said on Kimmel Live, describing the president's "social media summit" as a gathering of "conspiracy theorists, internet trolls, QAnon followers, people who 'like' their own posts — all the worst people on the internet. There haven't been this many trolls in one room since the table read for Lord of the Rings."

"Trump notably did not invite Facebook or Twitter to the summit, because he claims they're biased against him — even though they're a big reason why he got elected," Kimmel said. "Without Twitter, Trump would be a crazy old man yelling at busboys at Mar-a-Lago right now. But he doesn't trust them because with all that's going on in the world, what the president seems most concerned about is how many 'likes' he gets on Twitter." He showed part of Trump's bizarre speech. Trump "claims Twitter's got this conspiracy against him, so what does he do?" Kimmel asked. "Today he tweets more than 20 times." He read a few of them and laughed: "Sounds like somebody's working on his Tinder profile to me."

Meanwhile, "Republicans in Congress met with administration officials and they now say they're confident that the election in 2020 will be safe and secure from foreign interference," Kimmel said. "And you know what? If the people with the most to gain from election tampering say it's not a concern, well, that's good enough for me." Russia is clearly going to try to interfere in 2020, "Republicans in Congress know that we need legislation to protect against that, but they can't say it because Daddy Donald takes it as an insult," he said. "So what they're doing is .... nothing. They will do nothing." He ended with some advice for Mississippi GOP gubernatorial candidate Robert Foster, who refuses to be alone with women. Watch below. Peter Weber

April 18, 2019

While President Trump "waits for someone to convert the Mueller report into a finger-puppet show, he is keeping his thumbs occupied" tweeting about Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), Stephen Colbert said on Wednesday's Late Show. "Sanders did a town hall on Monday night on Fox News, which left Trump feeling burned." He read Trump's tweet complaining about Bret Baier being too "smiley and nice" with "Crazy Bernie" and asking Fox News, "now we have Donna Brazile?" "We?" Colbert asked. "Mr. President, on behalf of the American people everywhere, let me remind you: You don't work for Fox News. They work for you."

"Trump wasn't done stewing about Bernie," suggesting Fox News "stuffed" the town hall with "Bernie supporters," Colbert noted. Trump also predicted he will face either "Crazy Bernie Sanders" or "Sleepy Joe Biden" in the 2020 election, adding: "May God Rest Their Soul!" "Is he going to campaign them to death?" he asked. "I mean, sir, we'll let you get away with 'Lock her up!' but I draw the line at 'Dig the grave! Dig the grave!'"

Jimmy Kimmel took issue with Trump's nicknames. "Is Joe Biden sleepy?" he asked on Kimmel Live. "I don't know, to me he always looks like he's been up for two days eating cigarettes." Besides, he's already nicknamed at least four other people "sleepy," Kimmel noted. "This is lazy, though, this recycling of the nicknames. I think Trump might be losing his touch." "Crazy Bernie" and "Sleepy Joe" sound less like slurs than characters in a Bruce Springsteen song, he said, turning to an expert to find out what's going on with Trump's name game.

At Conan, Conan O'Brien actually thought Trump may have had a point about the Fox News town hall being "stuffed" with Bernie bros. Peter Weber

March 14, 2019

Facebook and Instagram were down most of Wednesday, Jimmy Kimmel said on Kimmel Live. but "fortunately for our president, Twitter was up and running, no problem at all. The president was tapping his tiny little fingers to weigh in on, of all things, late night comedy shows this morning."

Trump was live-tweeting Fox & Friends taking a Jay Leno quote out of context, and he decried the "one-side hatred" on today's late night shows. "What a snowflake," Kimmel said. In the interview, Leno, the former Tonight Show host, was talking about how late night TV has changed, opining that things are harder than when he joked about "horny" Bill Clinton and "dumb" George W. Bush. "He's right," Kimmel said. "It's harder now because Trump is dumb and horny at the same time, and so now we have to cover both things."

"I don't want to talk about Donald Trump every night," Kimmel explained. "None of us who host these shows do, but he gives us no choice. ... Before 10 this morning — his former campaign chairman was sentenced to prison for the second time in a week, he called himself the most successful president in history, and he tweeted to let people know his wife hasn't been replaced with a body double. I'm not supposed to mention that? Obama wore mom jeans one time, we made jokes about it for six straight years. How about this? You stop being terrible, we'll stop pointing it out, okay?"

Besides, Stephen Colbert said at The Late Show, "the comedy I do is not one-sided. I can make fun of the president from every angle. ... And I don't hate the president, I just don't trust him. Like I don't hate the 737 MAX 8, but I'm not getting on board." Trump also rapid-tweeted, in all-caps, "Make America great again" and "Keep America great," and Colbert reported what was airing on Fox News during that 27-second gap when America became great: "It was an Arby's commercial." Watch his reaction below. Peter Weber

August 7, 2018

President Trump's staff has left him to his own devices — notably, his Twitter phone — during his 11-day vacation at a golf resort in New Jersey, and "behind the scenes, he's apparently freaking out about all the investigations closing in," Stephen Colbert said on Monday's Late Show. "Between Friday and Sunday he tweeted 48 times!" Colbert focused on one tweet in particular: Trump admitting the Trump Tower meeting his son Don Jr. organized with Russians was about getting "dirt" on Hillary Clinton, and denying he's worried this puts his "wonderful son, Donald," in legal jeopardy.

"'Wonderful son' Donald?" Colbert joked. "So he has two sons named Donald?" He unpacked Trump's "tweetfession" some more. "Of course, the biggest takeaway from this tweet is that he's straight-up admitting that this was a meeting with representatives of the Russian government to get information on an opponent — also known as collusion," he said. Colbert ran through the earlier lies from Trump officials about the nature of the meeting, then moved on to Trump's first and only tweet about the wildfires ravaging California.

"I just want to take a second to say that our thoughts are with all those affected and with the first responders who are bravely fighting this disaster," Colbert said. "Donald Trump had a slightly different take," and he read it, with a factual critique. Trump makes a "good point," he deadpanned. "People forget that trees are the things that are burning; that's why we have to clear-cut them. Remember Smokey the Bear's motto: 'Only You Can Prevent Forests.'" Colbert ended by ridiculing a Trump tweet accusing the "Fake News Media" of starting wars. You can watch that below. Peter Weber

June 26, 2018

"Before we begin, I just want to give a shout-out to our show's No. 1 fan, the president of the United States," Jimmy Fallon joked on Monday's Tonight Show. "As you may have heard, last night, the president of the United States went after me on Twitter. So Melania, if you're watching, I don't think your anti-bullying campaign is working."

"When I saw that Trump insulted me on Twitter, I was going to tweet back immediately, but I thought, 'I have more important things to do,'" Fallon said. "Then I thought, 'Wait, shouldn't he have more important things to do? He's the president of the — what are you doing? You're the president!'" Fallon noted that he responded by making a donation in Trump's name to the immigrant advocacy group RAICES: "When Trump heard that, he was like, 'I love RAICES, they're my favorite peanut butter cup. There's no wrong way to eat a RAICES!'" Then he moved on to joking about "some real news," though it was mostly about Trump. Watch below. Peter Weber

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