More than seven years after he watched a very pregnant Amy Poehler rap with then-vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin on Saturday Night Live’s Weekend Update, Seth Meyers welcomed the former Alaska governor-turned-reality-TV star to his late-night show Monday, and he did not waste much time getting down to the biggest political issue of the moment.
With dozens of U.S. governors saying they would refuse to allow Syrian refugees into their states following the terror attacks in Paris, the Late Night with Seth Meyers host asked Palin how she views the issue. Isn’t this a “decision being made out of fear” he wanted to know?
“Their message is not, ‘We don’t want Syrian refugees,’” Palin argued. “Their message is, ‘What is the vetting process?’” She wanted to determine how we know these refugees were “innocents” and not “the bad guys.”
Meyers explained to Palin that the U.S. does, in fact, have a strict vetting process for refugees, as fellow late-night host John Oliver helpfully laid out the night before.
But for Palin, it all comes down to distrust of the federal government that is doing the vetting, saying it’s not as “legit” as they want you to believe it is. “Truly there is no way to filter out those that would want to do this country harm,” she said, presenting an argument that would seem to suggest a ban on all refugees.
“If we were to strive to reach ‘absolute safety,’ we would not have freedom,” Palin admitted, adding that we can have “both.” When Meyers appealed to her love of that “freedom” to explain why it’s so important to let those in need like Syrians escaping the terror of ISIS into the U.S., Palin agreed “for the most part.”
Earlier in the interview, Meyers and Palin discussed some lighter fare, such as her experience on that 2008 episode of SNL. “That was the best night of the campaign!” Palin told the host, adding that when she first saw images of Tina Fey as her, she was like, “I thought it was me!”
Palin also talked about the apology she received from comedian Louis CK backstage at SNL40 following his drunken Twitter rant against her years earlier. “Of all the celebrities who have said some things that, you know, weren’t always of the nicest things in the world, he's the only one who has ever apologized like that,” she said.
Finally, Meyers got Palin to weigh in on her old friend Donald Trump, who she jokingly predicted could run as her vice president during her cameo on the SNL anniversary show.
Asked why she thinks he's doing so well in the polls, Palin answered, “Because he’s not a politician, thank the Lord.”