Seth Meyers spent an inordinate amount of time Thursday night fixating on President Donald Trump’s “very dumb obsession,” as he put it, with badgers.
“As we all know, Donald Trump is not a well-read man, but it’s still fascinating to find out the things that he’s curious about,” the Late Night host said. “And this week, we learned one of the strangest, dumbest things yet.”
Meyers was referring to an anecdote from Sinking in the Swamp: How Trump’s Minions and Misfits Poisoned Washington, a new book about Trumpworld by The Daily Beast’s Washington, D.C., reporters Lachlan Markay and Asawin Suebsaeng. As they report, Trump would repeatedly ask his first chief of staff Reince Priebus about badgers, presumably because he came from Wisconsin, the Badger State.
“‘Are they mean to people?’ Trump at least twice asked Priebus in the opening months of his presidency,” the pair wrote. “‘Or are they friendly creatures?’ The president would also ask if Priebus had any photos of badgers he could show him, and if Priebus could carefully explain to him how badgers ‘work’ exactly.”
“Oh my god, Trump is obsessed with badgers,” Meyers said. “I have so many questions about this. First of all, Trump wants to know how badgers ‘work?’ What does he mean by work? Does he mean, do they have hearts that pump blood to the rest of their bodies or does he mean, do badgers have jobs?”
“According to the book, Trump showed more genuine curiosity about badgers than actual policy issues,” the host added, before moving on to this week’s drama at the Justice Department. But he returned to the badger bit later in the segment as a way to show how “distracted” the president can get in meetings.
He imagined Trump nodding along to what the people around him are saying while thinking, “I wonder which animals are nice and which ones are mean. I bet squirrels are nice and pigeons are mean. Elephants are nice. Bobcats are mean! Groundhogs are neutral, no one ever had a problem with groundhogs. And penguins are fancy because they wear tuxedos!”
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