A special post-Super Bowl episode of The Late Show likely meant an unusually large viewership for Stephen Colbert Sunday night. But that didn’t mean the host was about to pull any of his usual punches against President Donald Trump.
Following an awkward cameo from Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi in the cold open, Colbert came out swinging in a monologue that took on the president’s pre-game interview with Face the Nation’s Margaret Brennan. He joked that the tradition “goes back to the very first Super Bowl, when Lyndon Johnson made the surprise announcement that he was sending both teams to Vietnam.”
During his CBS sit-down Trump said that he would have a “hard time” letting his son Barron play football. “He likes soccer,” the president said of his youngest. “A lot of people, including me, thought soccer would probably never make it in this country, but it really is moving forward rapidly.”
“Yes, we tried to keep soccer out for a long time, but it’s hard. It’s moving so rapidly. That’s how the caravan does it. They just dribble their kids up to the border,” Colbert said as Trump. “And then they bicycle kick them into El Paso, yelling, ‘Goooaaalll!’ That’s really why we need the wall. But it’s hard to build when you can’t use your hands.”
From there, the host moved on, explaining how Trump is “not going to be president forever” and pivoting to some of his potential 2020 opponents. Colbert praised New Jersey Senator Cory Booker’s “inspiring” and even “daring” campaign announcement. “I’ve never seen anyone so proud to be from Newark,” he said. “Newark: Home of the airport you didn’t realize you were landing at.”
“And there was a lot of not-so-subtle anti-Trump messaging in this ad,” the host added. “Booker tells a story of racist landlords turning away his parents, imagery of kids in cages. And, of course, a scene of him in a barber shop, which is an obvious dig at Trump, since it implies Booker could grow hair but chooses not to.”