Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.
Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

Stephen Colbert gives grudging credit to the 10 GOP congresspeople who voted to impeach Trump

Stephen Colbert
Stephen Colbert
Screenshot: The Late Show

Look, the country is still on the mail-order samurai sword’s edge of white supremacist insurrection after Donald Trump and most of the Republican Party showed just how into fascism they really are a week ago. But, still, this Wednesday’s House vote to impeach Donald Trump is historic stuff. First president impeached twice. Owner of fully half the impeachments in United States history. And impeached by the most bi-partisan effort ever. Man, it’s almost like electing a racist grifter reality show host and fake university scammer to the highest office in the land was not a well thought-out voter decision based on the needs of the country, but a violently bigoted, knee-jerk reaction by petty, self-victimizing white people smarting that a Black guy won the presidency. Twice.

As Stephen Colbert rang in the Trump administration’s second impeachment season in two years on Wednesday, the Late Show host couldn’t help but let out some cathartic schadenfreude, complaining, “I feel like I just took down the decorations from the last impeachment!” He’ll get over the effort, it seems, as the host continued his even-more unsparing than usual excoriation of those GOP lawmakers who now, even in the face of a Trump-addled mob of shit-smearing “homicidal yahoos” who stormed the Capitol prepared to literally murder anyone daring to do their job, refused on Wednesday to find the courage (or morality, or humanity) to stand up to a doddering, toppling old fascist.

You know, like Republican Representative Tom McClintock (R-CA) who bravely stood up on the floor of a chamber only recently cleared of murderous Nazi seditionists and Nazi stink, said, essentially, who hasn’t spent their political career whipping up the worst elements of the nation to a noose-stringing coup? Mocking McClintock’s reference to the mob as a “fringe,” Colbert noted that a poll saw some 45 percent of Republican voters thinking the attack on the very foundations of democracy was super-cool. Picturing McClintock in a mostly-fringe outfit, Colbert noted that, while the congress-coward would certainly be arrested for exposure, at least people could “see through your pants to know you don’t have any balls.”


Speaking of naming names of Republicans missing vital body parts, Colbert suggested some sort of group GOP discount at a sadly fictional bulk spine emporium, while giving it up to those ten (versus a GOP-shaming 197) Republican congresspeople who actually, as he put it, admitted that “the sky was blue” in calling for Trump’s pre-removal removal. (“Do you know how bad of a job you have to be doing to get fired, while you’re getting fired?,” Colbert asked rhetorically, suggesting that fomenting a deadly coup in your exit interview might just do the trick.) And, sure, Colbert did have some fun with pro-impeachment Republican Fred Upton’s (R-MI) watery, ass-covering, mumble-up to his eventual impeachment vote (with a dubbed “I am Spartacus” clip to pin Upton’s waffling sort-of courage down), but the host was at least partly sympathetic and appreciative. Even of noted awful person (and daughter of even worse person) Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY), whose no-bullshit condemnation of Trump in her statement to impeach, Colbert reluctantly gave the highest marks. “It burns!,” Colbert cried out, but, as with impeachment itself, putting country over party (or personal and justifiable repulsion) is what America is all about.

As to the chances of this (again, second) impeachment in the Senate, Colbert noted that he might have to dust off some never-before used praise of unlikely Republicans, as not-for-long Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-“Guy creeping out everyone else at the strip club”) has signaled (via those ever-courageous press leaks and back channels) that he’s prepared to let his Senate GOP lapdogs off their leash to vote their (let’s call them) consciences. Still, as Colbert noted, there are some get-out-of-the-turtle-house-free cards that are unlikely to be played by the likes of noted sycophant Lindsey Graham (R-SC), who, after having said a sweaty “Enough is enough!” upon emerging from the Senate panic-panic bunker last Wednesday, accepted a ride with Trump on Air Force One to Trump’s final mendacious hate rally on Tuesday. Luckily for the legendarily conscience-free Graham, Colbert noted that his lack of spine meant the staunch strongman-fluffer could squeeze into the overhead bin, no problem, while his puny reserves of courage wouldn’t set off any TSA suspicions. Just because Donald Trump is epically, historically, and infamously on his way out the fucking door doesn’t mean that Stephen Colbert is going to let Republican enablers, co-conspirators, and assorted lickspittles off the hook.

Contributor, The A.V. Club. Danny Peary's Cult Movies books are mostly to blame.

Share This Story

Get our newsletter