Speed Reads

Last Night on Late Night

Late night hosts pan Biden's press conference, cringe at McConnell's Black voter gaffe, back voting rights

It's been a year since President Biden was inaugurated, and "it seems like just yesterday out democracy was being held hostage by a cabal of obstructionists who didn't want every vote counted," Stephen Colbert said on Thursday's Late Show. "Oh wait, that was yesterday." All 50 Senate Democrats voted for a voting-rights bill Wednesday night, but then Sens. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) and Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.) voted with all 50 Republicans to block filibuster changes that would allow the bill to pass.

"Sinema and Manchin don't deserve all of the rage," Colbert said. "Lucky for us, there's plenty left over for the leader of the anti-voter coalition," Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), who "made a very telling distinction about the way he categorizes voters" — Black voters and Americans. "Wow, how embarrassing ... that it came out exactly as he meant it," Colbert said.

Yes, after blocking "a voting-rights bill that, if passed, would outlaw discrimination against minority voters and make it easier in general for all of use to vote," McConnell "poked his little old head out of his shell to accidentally say what he really means," Jimmy Kimmel said on Kimmel Live. And he means Black voters aren't "regular Americans, the pink ones, like him."

Biden's "approval rating reached a new low after his press conference yesterday," Kimmel said. "The press conference was a success in that he went nearly two hours without having to pee, but otherwise it wasn't great."

"President Biden yesterday held a 1 hour and 51 minute press conference — it was the first thing Americans actually wish Joe Manchin had stopped," Seth Meyers joked on Late Night. "Biden said yesterday that his first year in office has been 'a year of challenges,' but he'd rather focus on the positives — like your COVID test."

The Daily Show's Trevor Noah laid on thick sarcasm to detail how GOP-led states are making it harder to vote and easier to enable partisan vote-counters, and mock Manchin and Sinema for their toothless support for the Democrats' countervailing bills to make voting more convenient. "Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema believe so strongly in the power of voting that they used their vote to block voting rights for the entire country," he said. 

Full Frontal's Samantha Bee ran through what we're still learning about "just how bats--t some of the GOP schemes to end democracy actually were" after the 2020 election.