Chris Wallace Demands Colbert Answer: ‘Do You Believe in Open Borders?’

Aggressively liberal Late Show host Stephen Colbert isn’t used to having his ideology challenged. But that’s what happened on Thursday night as Fox News host Chris Wallace pushed back on immigration, the President’s accomplishments, and the very simple idea that a journalist shouldn’t be reflexively anti-Trump. 

Appearing on the CBS late night show, Wallace disagreed with the idea that “3 or 5 or 7,000 people from another country can just walk up to our border, knock on the door and say, ‘We want in.’” He patiently explained, “A country does need to have borders and there does need to be some kind of system that determines whether or not people are allowed in the country or not.” The Fox host demanded of Colbert: “Do you believe in open borders?” 

 

 

At one point, Colbert seemed baffled that a journalist wasn’t there to reflexively trash Trump: 

STEPHEN COLBERT: I didn't realize you were going to defend Donald Trump. 

WALLACE: I'm not going to attack him. 

COLBERT: Why not? If he lies all the time, why wouldn't you attack him? 

WALLACE: Because there are good things and bad things. Seriously. 

COLBERT: If you pour poison in a cup of water, there's still water in there. But I'm not going to drink it because I will be poisoned. 

The two went round and round on whether it’s possible not everything Trump does is terrible. Finally, Wallace found something Colbert would concede on: 

WALLACE: How about ISIS? 

COLBERT: I'll accept that. Internationally — 

WALLACE: I accept your apology. 

COLBERT: You're welcome. I apologize, Chris Wallace. I'm happy to. 

As the MRC’s Bill D’Agostino pointed out in a study, the networks have buried Trump’s defeat of ISIS in Iraq and Syria, offering only 0.33 percent of coverage on the evening newscasts (out of a total 10,000 minutes on the Trump presidency). 
A partial transcript is below. Click “expand” to read more. 

 

Late Show With Stephen Colbert
11/1/18
11:58pm 

STEPHEN COLBERT: Immigration speech today. What does that immigration speech mean to the election because it’s a real fear stoking speech. 

CHRIS WALLACE: Yeah, I mean what is interesting to me about the speech, we heard the president was going to speak at 4:15 in the Roosevelt room, make a speech to the nation. I think most of the networks or cable news took it live. He didn't say anything new. I mean, you can argue as whether he said was good or bad -- 

COLBERT: Bad. You want to argue the good part? 

WALLACE: Yes, okay, I will argue — I'll argue -- - yes, here we go.

...

COLBERT:  Fear to have the caravan good. 

WALLACE: Fear of the caravan is not good, but the idea that 3 or 5 or 7,000 people from another country can just walk up to our border, knock on the door and say, “we want in, we want to take jobs here, we want to work here,” no. A country does need to have borders and there does need to be some kind of system that determines whether or not people are allowed in the country or not. I mean, do you believe —  seriously —  do you believe in open borders? 

COLBERT: No, we don't have an open border. There is a system and 3,000 to 5,000 people will not make it here. This has happened many times before, and they never do, and you know that. And you know that there is a system in place, a legal system and we have laws that allow asylum. So I believe in the law. Do you believe in the law, Chris Wallace? 

WALLACE: Yeah. I believe in the law. Sure.  

COLBERT: Well I accept your apology, then. 

WALLACE: No, because to have the fact that the asylum rules, now, if somebody comes in and say, we have a credible fear of persecution —  

COLBERT: Yes? 

WALLACE: What happens? They are put out into the country, we don't have enough places to put them, so we do have a catch and release program, and about 10 percent of the people who are caught and released return for their hearings and only about 10 percent actually get legitimate asylum. 

COLBERT: I'm not going to fact check you because I don't have time but I will reject your reality and replace it with my own. When you find out whether his stats are true or not, let me know. 
We have a long interview, by the time this is over we’ll know whether you’re right. 

WALLACE: I may be wrong — 

COLBERT: Again, I accept your apology right now. 

WALLACE: Only 10% of the people who seek asylum are granted asylum. 

COLBERT: That's different than what you said. 

WALLACE: I said two things. I also said — 

COLBERT: They don't show up for their hearing. 

WALLACE: A lot of them don't. 

COLBERT:  Now, if a majority show up for their hearing, how wrong will you be? 

WALLACE:  I'll be about 40 percent wrong. 

COLBERT: We'll find out. 

WALLACE: I didn't know math was going to be part of this interview. 

COLBERT: Neither did I. I didn't realize you were going to defend Donald Trump. 

WALLACE: I'm not going to attack him. 

COLBERT: Why not? If he lies all the time, why wouldn't you attack him? 

WALLACE: Because there are good things and bad things. Seriously. 

COLBERT: If you pour poison in a cup of water, there's still water in there. But I'm not going to drink it because I will be poisoned. 

WALLACE: 4.1 percent growth rate. 3.7% unemployment rate, did you ever imagine we were going to have an unemployment rate of 3.7 percent. 

COLBERT: Yes, because we were headed that way the last five years. We are an extension. You understand that the economic recovery did not start on January 1, 2017. 

WALLACE:  I completely agree with that. I pointed out on my show a couple of months ago, more jobs had been created in the last 18 months of Obama than the first 18 months of Trump. 

COLBERT:  Then what's so special about this? 

WALLACE:  The fact that it's continued. It hasn't gone in the other direction. 

COLBERT: So the value is he hasn’t destroyed the good things, but he’s introduced a lot of hateful nationalism. 

WALLACE: How about ISIS? 

COLBERT: I’ll accept that. Internationally. 

WALLACE: I accept your apology. 

COLBERT: You’re welcome. I apologize, Chris Wallace. I’m happy to. 

 


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