Stephen Colbert was understandably irate on Wednesday as he condemned the violence incited by a pro-Trump mob at the U.S. Capitol.
“I have rarely been as upset as I am tonight, and I’m sure you are, too,” the Late Show host began. What followed was a 14-minute monologue that took aim at cowardice Republicans who have continued to coddle President Donald Trump despite a steady stream of “fascist rhetoric” and misinformation.
“Today, the U.S. Capitol was overrun for the first time since 1814 and a woman died. Who could have seen this coming? Everyone?” he asked, rhetorically. “This is the most shocking, most tragic, least surprising thing I have ever seen.
“For years now, people have been telling you cowards that if you let the president lie and lie over, then join him in that lie and say he’s right when you know for a fact that he’s not, there will be a terrible price to pay. But you just thought you’d never have to pay it, too,” Colbert asserted. “I really do hope you’re enjoying those tax cuts and those judges, because those judges are really going to be working hard — they’re going to be busy throwing these idiots in jail.”
Among those “idiots,” he said, should be Josh Hawley, a junior senator from Missouri who was photographed outside the U.S. Capitol with his fist in support of the MAGA mob. “Look at that! It’s like Black Power, butttttt the opposite,” Colbert said. “There really should be a name for that. And obviously he has to keep his fist closed, because if he opened it, you’d see all the blood on his hands.”
The CBS host also called out pro-Trump Fox News: “You think maybe years of peddling his conspiracy theories had anything to do with this? ‘Oh, but come on, man! You know we have our opinion side and our news side!’ ‘Come on, we’re just trying to turn a coin for Uncle Rupey — you know, sell a few lubricated catheters.’ Like those lubricated catheters, you know where you can stick your excuses,” Colbert said. “And you can skip the lubrication.”
Keep scrolling for additional reactions from TV’s late-night hosts…
The Tonight Show‘s Jimmy Fallon was equally disturbed by the traitorous behavior witnessed in Washington D.C. “This is what happens when there is no peaceful transition of power, and what happens when there is bad leadership,” the NBC host said. “This is not how you lose… Today was not patriotism. Today was terrorism.”
ABC’s Jimmy Kimmel recapped the “treason finale” of the Trump presidency and called out election objectors like Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas, who is “so hungry for political power, and so desperate to be liked and supported by these nuts who think Joe Biden is a Chinese agent, and Satan is trying to force them to wear masks to the mall,” that he is “willing to roll the dice on a civil war.”
The Late Late Show‘s James Corden responded to the president’s remarks in a since-deleted video where he sent his “love” to the mob that descended upon the Capitol. “I wouldn’t even want to imagine his treatment or response to those people if they had been wearing Black Lives Matter hats instead of red MAGA ones,” the CBS host remarked.
Late Night‘s Seth Meyers called for the immediate removal of President Trump: “Multi-racial, pluralistic democracy is fragile and precious, and it requires our vigilant stewardship and protection,” he said. “Anyone not willing to forward that project, with the fullness of their effort, must be shamed and disgraced and removed from office.”