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  • >> Stephen: HEY, EVERYBODY!

  • WELCOME TO "A LATE SHOW."

  • I'M YOUR HOST STEPHEN COLBERT.

  • YOU MIGHT NOTICE WHEN THE SHOW IS OPEN THESE DAYS I'M LEANING

  • BACK IN THE CHAIR A LOT.

  • I'M EITHER VERY COMFORTABLE IN THIS JOB THESE DAYS OR I NO

  • LONGER HAVE THE CORE STRENGTH TO SIT UP.

  • LET'S FIGURE OUT WHICH IT IS.

  • THE CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC CONTINUES TO RAGE IN AMERICA'S

  • HOT ZONE: 1600 PENNSYLVANIA AVENUE.

  • AND REPORTS SAY THE WEST WING HAS TURNED INTO A GHOST TOWN.

  • PREVIOUSLY, THE ONLY GHOST HAUNTING THE MANSION WAS MIKE

  • PENCE.

  • HE'S AT LEAST A ZOMBIE.

  • WHY ELSE IS HE ATTRACTING ALL THOSE FLIES?

  • THINGS HAVE GOTTEN ESPECIALLY TOUGH FOR WHITE HOUSE

  • CORRESPONDENTS LIKE CNN'S JOE JOHNS WHO HAD THIS HAPPEN TO HIM

  • DURING A BROADCAST.

  • >> GET!

  • THERE HE IS!

  • (ROARING) THE DAMN, FRICKIN' RACCOONS,

  • MAN.

  • GOD.

  • AGAIN!

  • THAT'S THE SECOND TIME!

  • JESUS!

  • >> I GUESS THE TRAP'S NOT WORKING.

  • >> RIGHT.

  • HEY, MAN.

  • THAT FRICKIN' RACCOON CAME BACK.

  • IT ALWAYS COMES AROUND RIGHT ABOUT WHEN I AM GOING TO GO ON

  • TV.

  • ( LAUGHTER ) >> STEPHEN: POOR JOE JOHNS!

  • STUCK THERE AT THE WHITE HOUSE WITH THAT DISEASE-RIDDEN,

  • GARBAGE EATING ANIMAL RUNNING AROUND.

  • ALSO THAT RACCOON.

  • BUT I'M NOT THAT SURPRISED.

  • HUMANS HAVE RETREATED FROM THEIR NATURAL HABITATS BECAUSE OF THE

  • VIRUS, AND WILDLIFE MOVES IN.

  • ED SULLIVAN THEATER'S BEEN EMPTY FOR SEVEN MONTHS.

  • I WONDER WHAT'S GOING ON DOWN THERE.

  • DO WE HAVE A PICTURE?

  • THAT DAMN RACCOON IS AT MY DESK!

  • AND HE'S INTERVIEWING BRADLEY COOPER!

  • AND THEY'RE CLEARLY HAVING SO MUCH FUN!

  • LOOK AT THE CAMERA STRAIGHT!

  • OF COURSE, JOE JOHNS ISN'T THE FIRST NEWSMAN TO BE INTERRUPTED

  • BY AN ANIMAL.

  • IT HAPPENED TO CRONKITE.

  • >> PRESIDENT NIXON REPORTEDLY WILL ANNOUNCE HIS RESIGNATION,

  • AND VICE PRESIDENT FORD WILL BECOME THE NATIONS 38TH

  • PRESIDENT TOMORROW, THAT WORD COMES--

  • (ROARING) (SCREAMING)

  • -- AND THAT'S THE WAY IT IS!

  • >> STEPHEN: WITH COVID RUNNING RAMPANT THROUGHOUT THE EXECUTIVE

  • BRANCH, THIS MORNING THE COMMISSION ON PRESIDENTIAL

  • DEBATES ANNOUNCED THAT THE SECOND PRESIDENTIAL DEBATE WILL

  • BE VIRTUAL.

  • VIRTUAL?

  • HOW'S THAT GONNA WORK?

  • HOPEFULLY IT WILL BE LIKE "TRON."

  • SO INSTEAD OF DISCUSSING THE ECONOMY, THEY'LL RACE AROUND ON

  • RECUMBENT LIGHT-CYCLES.

  • OF COURSE, THEY'LL NEED TO UPDATE THEIR WARDROBE.

  • THE DECISION DIDN'T SIT WELL WITH TRUMP'S CAMPAIGN MANAGER,

  • BILL STEPIEN-- WHO, BY THE WAY, ALSO HAS COVID.

  • HE CLAIMED THE NEW FORMAT IS UNNECESSARY BECAUSE TRUMP "WILL

  • HAVE POSTED MULTIPLE NEGATIVE TESTS PRIOR TO THE DEBATE."

  • THAT'S NOT HOW THAT WORKS.

  • YOU CAN'T PUT ALL YOUR FAITH IN SOMETHING THAT COULD HAPPEN DOWN

  • THE LINE WHEN THE POTENTIAL CONSEQUENCE IS DEATH.

  • THAT'S LIKE SAYING, "LOOK, I KNOW YOUR PARACHUTE ISN'T

  • WORKING NOW, BUT I HAVE CONFIDENCE THAT WE'LL GET IT

  • UP AND RUNNING BEFORE WE REACH TERMINAL VELOCITY.

  • NOW HAND ME THAT SCOTCH TAPE."

  • SO WHAT WILL THIS VIRTUAL DEBATE LOOK LIKE?

  • WE MIGHT NEVER FIND OUT, BECAUSE AFTER IT WAS ANNOUNCED, TRUMP

  • IMMEDIATELY CALLED MARIA BARTIROMO OF FOX BUSINESS AND

  • SAID THIS: >> I AM NOT GOING TO DO A

  • VIRTUAL DEBATE.

  • I AM NOT GOING TO WASTE MY TIME ON A VIRTUAL DEBATE.

  • >> STEPHEN: YES, TRUMP'S TIME IS VERY PRECIOUS... HE SAID WHILE

  • CALLING FOX BUSINESS IN THE MIDDLE OF A DEADLY PLAGUE.

  • BUT IT WAS NO SURPRISE TO HEAR TRUMP'S MAIN GRIPE ABOUT A

  • VIRTUAL FORMAT.

  • >> AND THEN THEY CUT YOU OFF WHENEVER THEY WANT.

  • >> STEPHEN: HE'S AFRAID OF HAVING TO FOLLOW THE RULES THAT

  • HE AGREED TO.

  • (AS TRUMP) "THE REFEREES HAVE ALL THESE

  • FOOTBALL RULES.

  • IF THEY WON'T LET ME STAB THE QUARTERBACK, I'M GOING TO TAKE

  • MY BLOOD-SOAKED BALL AND GO HOME."

  • THE SUBJECT SHIFTED TO COVID AND WHETHER OR NOT THE PRESIDENT

  • THOUGHT HE WAS A DISEASE VECTOR: >> YOU SAY YOU FEEL GREAT, BUT

  • THE MEDIA IS OUT THERE SAYING THAT YOU'RE CONTAGIOUS.

  • BUT DO YOU FEEL THAT YOU ARE?

  • I MEAN, OBVIOUSLY YOU WOULDN'T FEEL THAT WAY IF YOU SAY YOU'RE

  • READY TO GO TO A RALLY.

  • >> NO, I DON'T THINK I'M CONTAGIOUS.

  • >> STEPHEN: WHAT KIND OF QUESTION IS THAT?

  • DO YOU FEEL CONTAGIOUS?

  • "FOLLOW UP, WHAT DOES THE ECONOMY SMELL LIKE, AND HOW HIGH

  • IS WHEN?" TRUMP ASSURED BARTIROMO THAT

  • HE'S PROBABLY OKAY: >> I WILL BE TESTED VERY SOON,

  • BUT I AM ESSENTIALLY VERY CLEAN.

  • THEY SAY IT'S OVER A PERIOD OF SIX, SEVEN DAYS, AND I WAS-- I,

  • YOU KNOW, AN AMAZING THING HAPPENED TO ME.

  • I WENT IN, AND I DIDN'T FEEL GOOD.

  • AND THAT IS OKAY.

  • I EXPECTED AT SOME POINT BECAUSE I AM OUT THERE, I GOT TO BE A

  • LEADER, I CAN'T, YOU KNOW, WINSTON CHURCHILL DIDN'T STAY IN

  • HIS BASEMENT FOR SIX MONTHS.

  • >> STEPHEN: THAT'S EXACTLY WHAT HE DID!

  • IT'S CALLED A CHURCHILL BUNKER AND IT'S NOW A MUSEUM.

  • YOU SHOULD KNOW THAT BECAUSE YOU WERE THERE WITH YOUR FAMILY.

  • (AS TRUMP) "OH, RIGHT, SORRY.

  • MY MIND REFUSES TO FORM MEMORIES THAT INVOLVE ERIC."

  • TRUMP THEN EXPLAINED WHY THE VIRUS WAS SO HARD TO STOP:

  • >> LOOK, IT'S A TINY, TINY, LIKEN IT TO A TINY MICROSCOPIC

  • PIECE OF DUST, AND IT GETS INTO NOSE OR YOUR MOUTH OR YOUR EYE

  • FRANKLY, OR SOMETHING ELSE WHERE YOU TOUCH SOMETHING.

  • SO I UNDERSTAND, AND THEN GET BETTER.

  • >> STEPHEN: SOUNDS LIKE SOMEBODY VERY RECENTLY JUST EXPLAINED TO

  • HIM HOW GERMS WORK.

  • (AS TRUMP) "AND MARIA, THE WAY WE GOT HERE

  • IN THE FIRST PLACE IS THAT A MOMMY AND A DADDY LOVE EACH

  • OTHER VERY, VERY MUCH AND GAVE EACH OTHER A VERY SPECIAL HUG."

  • THEN DADDY GOES AND GETS SPANKED BY A PORN STAR.

  • OF COURSE, ONE OF THE REASONS FOR TRUMP'S MIRACULOUS RECOVERY

  • IS NEW DEVELOPMENTS IN PHARMACEUTICALS-- THAT HE ALSO

  • THINKS HE DIDN'T NEED: >> WE HAVE-- I CALL THEM CURES,

  • I DON'T CALL THEM THERAPEUTICS.

  • YOU TAKE IT, IT'S AN ANTIBODY DRUG, YOU TAKE IT, AND IT BEATS

  • THE HELL OUT OF IT.

  • AND I'M TELLING YOU, I COULD HAVE WALKED OUT 24 HOURS AFTER I

  • WENT IN.

  • I DIDN'T HAVE TO GO IN, FRANKLY, I THINK IT WOULD HAVE GONE AWAY

  • BY ITSELF.

  • IT'S GREAT.

  • AND WHAT I AM DOING IS I AM GOING TO SUPPLY THIS DRUG-- IT

  • MADE ME BETTER, I WILL TELL YOU RIGHT NOW.

  • I WALKED IN, I DIDN'T FEEL GREAT, I THINK I WOULD HAVE DONE

  • IT FINE WITHOUT DRUGS, YOU KNOW, YOU DON'T REALLY NEED DRUGS.

  • I STOPPED, I DON'T TAKE THEM ANYMORE.

  • NO, I DON'T TAKE THEM ANYMORE I THINK TAKING ALMOST NOTHING.

  • >> STEPHEN: SO, THESE DRUGS ARE GREAT, BUT HE DOESN'T NEED THEM,

  • BUT THEY CURED HIM RIGHT AWAY, BUT HE'S GOING TO FAST TRACK

  • THEM, BUT HE WOULD HAVE BEEN FINE WITHOUT THEM, BUT HE'S

  • NOT TAKING THEM.

  • WHY IS IT THAT HE TOOK THE EXPERIMENTAL DRUG, AND WE'RE THE

  • ONES EXPERIENCING DIZZINESS, CONFUSION, AND NAUSEA?

  • SHORTLY AFTER TRUMP'S PHONE-IN WITH FOX BUSINESS, HE RELEASED A

  • NEW VIDEO ON TWITTER IN WHICH HE BRAGGED ABOUT HOW GOOD HE'S

  • BEEN FOR THE MILITARY.

  • >> I TOOK OVER A DEPLETED MILITARY-- OLD EQUIPMENT, BROKEN

  • EQUIPMENT.

  • EVEN IN THE ARMY, ALL BRAND-NEW UNIFORMS WITH THE BELT,

  • EVERYBODY WANTED THE BELT.

  • >> STEPHEN: WHAT?!

  • WHAT DOES THAT MEAN?

  • YOU'RE BRAGGING ABOUT GETTING THEM A BELT?

  • BY THE WAY, I'VE GOTTEN ENOUGH BAD GIFTS IN MY LIFE TO KNOW

  • WHEN SOMEBODY IS JUST TRYING TO BE NICE.

  • "WOW, IT'S A BELT!

  • THANK YOU!

  • I WAS JUST SAYING HOW MUCH I NEEDED A BELT WITH A... IS THIS

  • A PEWTER COW SKULL BUCKLE?

  • SO EXCITED.

  • DO YOU HAVE THE RECEIPT?

  • I WANT TO FRAME IT SO I CAN REMEMBER THE TIME I GOT THIS

  • REALLY GREAT BELT."

  • IT'S NOT JUST THE PRESIDENT, SOME PRETTY IMPORTANT WHITE

  • HOUSE STAFFERS ARE TESTING POSITIVE, TOO.

  • FOR INSTANCE, ONE OF TRUMP'S MILITARY AIDES TASKED WITH

  • CARRYING THE NUCLEAR FOOTBALL REPORTEDLY HAS CORONAVIRUS.

  • BUT DON'T WORRY, THEY FOUND SOMEONE AT THE WHITE HOUSE

  • WILLING TO STEP IN.

  • YOU KNOW HOW THE WORLD IS INSANE RIGHT NOW AND EVERY DAY YOU

  • THINK, "THAT'S GOT TO BE IT.

  • THINGS CAN'T POSSIBLY GET MORE INSANE"?

  • WELL, TODAY GET MORE.

  • BECAUSE THE F.B.I. SAYS IT THWARTED A PLOT TO VIOLENTLY

  • OVERTHROW THE GOVERNMENT AND KIDNAP MICHIGAN GOVERNOR

  • GRETCHEN WHITMER.

  • WHAT?

  • ALSO, WHAAA?!

  • IS THIS REAL LIFE, OR ARE WE TRAPPED IN A NEW SEASON OF "24?"

  • I WAS JUST GETTING USED TO BEING TRAPPED IN A CROSSOVER EPISODE

  • OF "THE WEST WING" AND "THE WALKING DEAD!"

  • AND DID THEY MEAN TAKE OVER THE GOVERNMENT OF MICHIGAN?

  • I'M NOT SURE WHAT THAT WOULD DO!

  • ENDANGER OUR AC-DELCO AUTO PARTS SUPPLY?

  • LOWER AMERICA'S STRATEGIC RESERVES OF FISHING LICENSES?

  • THE GOOD NEWS IS THAT THESE GUYS ARE IN CUSTODY, AND GOVERNOR

  • WHITMER AND HER FAMILY ARE ALL SAFE.

  • SO, WHO WERE THESE NUMBSKULLS?

  • WELL, THE MICHIGAN ATTORNEY GENERAL IDENTIFIED THE GROUP AS

  • THE "WOLVERINE WATCHMEN."

  • SO, THE CLARIFY, THIS ANTI-COVID RULES MILITIA NAMED THEMSELVES

  • AFTER A GUY WHO FAMOUSLY CAN'T GET SICK, AND PEOPLE WHO

  • FAMOUSLY WEAR MASKS.

  • APPARENTLY, THESE GUYS WERE ANGRY ABOUT GOVERNOR WHITMER'S

  • STATE-WIDE CORONAVIRUS LOCKDOWN.

  • AND THE F.B.I. WERE TIPPED OFF TO THEIR PLANS WHEN ONE OF THE

  • DUMMIES POSTED A FACEBOOK VIDEO IN WHICH HE COMPLAINED ABOUT

  • COVID-19 RESTRICTIONS ON GYMS OPERATING IN MICHIGAN.

  • SO, THE WHOLE REVOLUTION COULD'VE BEEN AVOIDED IF HE HAD

  • JUST SPRUNG FOR A PELOTON?

  • THAT IS THE LAMEST REASON TO OVERTHROW THE GOVERNMENT.

  • "SURE, I UNDERSTAND THE NECESSITY OF STATE MANDATED

  • HEALTH STANDARDS, BUT I DRAW THE LINE AT LOSING DEFINITION IN MY

  • DELTOIDS!" LOOK AT THAT.

  • I'M JUST COUNTING THE SHREDS, RIGHT HERE.

  • WELL, AT LEAST NOW THEY CAN ALL CONCENTRATE ON GETTING RIPPED IN

  • JAIL.

  • BETWEEN THE DAILY HOUR IN THE YARD AND A STEADY DIET OF

  • POTATOES AND EXPIRED TACO MEAT, THEY'LL GET JACKED.

  • SO THE FEDS GATHERED ALL THE EVIDENCE THEY NEEDED AGAINST

  • THESE MAROONS, THANKS TO AN F.B.I. CONFIDENTIAL SOURCE WHO

  • RECORDED THE MEETINGS IN DUBLIN, OHIO.

  • TALK ABOUT GETTING THE SHORT END OF THE UNDERCOVER STICK.

  • "AND FOR OUR NEXT ASSIGNMENT TIM WILL BE GOING TO DUBLIN... OHIO.

  • SORRY, I SHOULD'VE LEAD WITH OHIO."

  • THESE DINGUSES WERE ALSO PLANNING TO TAKE OUT A BRIDGE,

  • WHICH THEY FELT WOULD ALSO HINDER POLICE'S ABILITY TO

  • FOLLOW THEM ON WATER.

  • I'M GONNA GUESS ON SURFBOARDS?

  • OR AS THEY ACTUALLY PUT IT IN AN ACTUAL GROUP CHAT WHICH ACTUALLY

  • SHOWS UP IN THE ACTUAL COURT FILING:

  • IF THE "BRIDGE EMOJI" GO "FINGER POINTING DOWN EMOJI" IT ALSO "X

  • EMOJI" THE "WAVE EMOJI."

  • AND NOW EVERY SINGLE LAST ONE OF THESE "EGGPLANT EMOJIS" IS

  • TOTALLY "SCREW EMOJI"-ED.

  • THE GROUP MET NUMEROUS TIMES TO MAKE THEIR PLANS, INCLUDING IN

  • THE BASEMENT OF A SHOP IN MICHIGAN THAT WAS ACCESSIBLE

  • ONLY THROUGH A TRAPDOOR UNDER A RUG.

  • OOH, A TRAPDOOR HIDEAWAY?

  • WHAT'S THE MATTER, DID THE ROPE LADDER BREAK TO TIMMY'S TREE

  • HOUSE?

  • ONE OF THESE MILITIA MORONS WAS CRASHING WITH A FRIEND, THE

  • OWNER OF A VACUUM STORE IN GRAND RAPIDS, MICHIGAN, WHO HAD GIVEN

  • HIM A PLACE TO STAY IN THE STORE'S BASEMENT AFTER HE WAS

  • KICKED OUT OF HIS GIRLFRIEND'S HOME.

  • MUST HAVE BEEN HARD FOR THAT GUY TO GET BACK INTO THE DATING

  • SCENE.

  • "WHAT DO YOU SAY WE HEAD BACK TO MY PLACE... THE BASEMENT UNDER A

  • TRAPDOOR IN A VACUUM STORE."

  • HUH?

  • YEAH...