Colbert Blasts Trump ‘Disaster,’ Asks Biden: ‘Are You Gonna Beat This Guy?’

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After opening Thursday night’s Late Show by labeling a visit from President Trump to be the latest “disaster” to befall the state of Michigan, liberal host Stephen Colbert later began a softball interview with presumptive Democratic nominee Joe Biden by hopefully asking: “Are you gonna beat this guy?”

“You know, the great state of Michigan is grappling with a series of disasters right now: Record unemployment, coronavirus, flooding, and today, a visit from Donald Trump,” Colbert declared at the start of his monologue early in the show. He then nastily added: “There’s a reason it’s wearing a mitten – because it doesn’t want you to see which finger it’s holding up.”

 

 

The entire second half of the program was devoted to the friendly chat with Biden. As he introduced the former Vice President, Colbert gushed: “Well, I’m so glad to have you here. You are my last guest of an eight-week run that we’ve been doing at home....this feels really good to finish out this run with the presumptive Democratic nominee.”

Continuing to sound like an adoring fan, Colbert asked: “I have but one question to lead us off, sir – are you gonna beat this guy?” Biden assured him: “Yes. Yes, yes, yes, yes.”

Colbert followed up: “What’s the message?” Biden replied: “I don’t want to jinx myself, but I’ll tell you why. You know, the American people, they fully understand what’s at stake here. I mean, this is the most important election in anybody’s life, not because I’m running, but because of the circumstances.”

Moments later, Colbert proclaimed: “...one of the slogans of your campaign, when you first started, was, ‘Restoring America’s Soul,’ which I think is a worthwhile goal. But, right now, America also needs to restore its body.”

Already looking past the long general election campaign that has yet to happen, the comedian assumed Biden would pick the “best people” for his administration to help “restore this country” after Trump:  

Now, I assume that you’re getting advice from epidemiologists and from medical experts on how to hit the ground running, should you be elected. I also assume that you have the pick of the best people out there, because Trump did not pick the best people, and in the cases that he did, they didn’t last very long if they disagreed with him. When you enter the White House on January 20th, 2021, after you take that oath, will you appoint people from both sides of the aisle? Because there are so many Republicans who want desperately to work hard to restore this country.

Despite all the partisan sniping, Biden declared: “Yes, absolutely. Look, this isn’t partisan issue.”

The Democrat went on to tout his preparedness to handle coronavirus: “I get a 10:00 briefing that lasts for an hour to an hour and a half from some of the leading experts in the world on dealing with this coronavirus and how to deal with it. And I usually get about a 30 to 40-page report every single morning.” Colbert interrupted with another jab at Trump: “Do you actually read that report, sir? Because that is no longer presidential. That is no longer considered presidential.”

Predictably, the lengthy softball interview was completely free of any questions about the sexual assault claim against Biden from former Senate staffer Tara Reade. Colbert was too busy trying to boost Biden’s electoral chances.

Here are excerpts of the May 21 exchange:

11:38 PM ET

(...)

STEPHEN COLBERT: You know, the great state of Michigan is grappling with a series of disasters right now: Record unemployment, coronavirus, flooding, and today, a visit from Donald Trump. There’s a reason it’s wearing a mitten – because it doesn’t want you to see which finger it’s holding up.

Trump went to a Ford plant in Ypsilanti today. And one of the big questions was whether he was going to set a good example and abide by the company’s rules by wearing a face mask. People were so concerned that, prior to the visit, the Michigan attorney general wrote a letter asking Trump to wear a mask for the visit, explaining, “Anyone who has potentially been recently exposed, including the President of the United States, has not only a legal responsibility, but also a social and moral responsibility, to take reasonable precautions.”

Okay, you lost him at legal. And social. And moral. And responsibility. And “wrote a letter.” Next time, try delivering your message via a sock puppet with a nice set of cans.

(...)

11:53 PM ET

COLBERT: Well, I’m so glad to have you here. You are my last guest of an eight-week run that we’ve been doing at home. And it’s had its challenges but this feels really good to finish out this run with the presumptive Democratic nominee. I have but one question to lead us off, sir – are you gonna beat this guy?

JOE BIDEN: Yes. Yes, yes, yes, yes.

COLBERT: What’s the message?

BIDEN: I don’t want to jinx myself, but I’ll tell you why. You know, the American people, they fully understand what’s at stake here. I mean, this is the most important election in anybody’s life, not because I’m running, but because of the circumstances.

(...)

11:54 PM ET

COLBERT: I know that the – one of the slogans of your campaign, when you first started, was, “Restoring America’s Soul,” which I think is a worthwhile goal. But, right now, America also needs to restore its body.

BIDEN: Yup.

COLBERT: We – 50 states, all 50 states are doing some form of reopening right now.

BIDEN: Yes.

COLBERT: Though none of those states have met all the CDC criteria. So there are concerns of a second wave. What can we do to prevent that, sir?

BIDEN: Well, first of all, as I understand it – in fact, I know it – the CDC had set out and were prepared to issue some really very detailed guidelines about how to reopen, under what circumstances, and the White House quashed that.

(...)

11:59 PM ET

COLBERT: Now, I assume that you’re getting advice from epidemiologists and from medical experts on how to hit the ground running, should you be elected. I also assume that you have the pick of the best people out there, because Trump did not pick the best people, and in the cases that he did, they didn’t last very long if they disagreed with him. When you enter the White House on January 20th, 2021, after you take that oath, will you appoint people from both sides of the aisle? Because there are so many Republicans who want desperately to work hard to restore this country.

BIDEN: Yes, absolutely. Look, this isn’t partisan issue. I know it sounds, you know, almost tried to say it, there’s nothing partisan about this.

(...)

12:00 AM ET

BIDEN: Well, let me put it this way – at least four mornings a week, I get a 10:00 briefing that lasts for an hour to an hour and a half from some of the leading experts in the world on dealing with this coronavirus and how to deal with it. And I usually get about a 30 to 40-page report every single morning. And –

COLBERT: Do you actually read that report, sir? Because that is no longer presidential. That is no longer considered presidential.

BIDEN: Not only do I read it, we then go through it page by page.

(...)

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