“Tonight had its ups and downs, but the highlight for me was that we’ll never have to watch Donald Trump debate ever again,” Stephen Colbert said in his live Late Show monologue Thursday night. But more important than that, the host reminded viewers that the second presidential debate was “the last chance for Trump to be seen by millions of eyeballs for free.”
After the first debate in late September, Colbert, like most Americans, felt completely demoralized, calling Trump’s refusal to condemn white supremacy “one of the most upsetting moments, not only of the night, but of my lifetime.”
This time, he was in a noticeably better mood, praising moderator Kristen Welker for keeping the president in line and giving Biden credit for forcefully fighting back Trump’s smears about his son Hunter.
Meanwhile, he said, “Trump sounds like three kids stacked in a trench coat pretending to be an adult. ‘I’m like a businessman doing business. I love office and eat taxes with my coffee. Three tickets for the boobie movie, please.’”
As Colbert put it, Trump “seemed to get spooked as the night went on” and started resorting to the foundations of his original 2016 campaign like “immigrants are scary.” At one point, the president actually talked about “murderers” and “rapists” coming over the U.S.-Mexico border.
“Trump’s closing with the line he opened this entire nightmare with,” the host said, playing a reverse video of the president and his wife Melania ascending the escalator at Trump Tower. “Goodbye, sir! See you at the tribunals!”
In response to Trump calling himself the “least racist person in the room,” Colbert added, “‘There are all kinds of Black people and Mexicans hiding out there in the dark. Could be, I don’t know, plotting and planning and waiting to pounce and I wouldn’t even know because I’m so not racist.’”
In the end, Colbert said Americans have a “tough choice” to make. “Do they vote for Joe Biden on November 3rd?” he asked. “Or do they vote for him early? Because the ultimate mute button is in your hands.”
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