Brow Beat

Stephen Colbert Tries to Reignite the Hillary vs. Bernie Beef

Stephen Colbert is ready to move forward… right after Sanders tells us how he feels about Clinton.

The Late Show with Stephen Colbert

On Thursday night’s Late Show, Stephen Colbert welcomed the “raspberry seed in Washington’s wisdom tooth,” Bernie Sanders to talk about his new book, healthcare, and of course, Hillary Clinton.

While ostensibly there to promote his new book, Bernie Sanders’ Guide to Political Revolution (a “political powder keg right here between two covers,” said the host), Colbert seemed more interesting in pressing the former candidate about a different book, Hillary Clinton’s What Happened, excerpts of which have received the late night treatment for their Sanders accusations.

After asking one question about Bernie’s revolution, Colbert pivoted to Clinton, asking how Sanders felt about the claim that he did lasting damage to her campaign and therefore America (RIP America), as well as claims that he made unrealistic “pony promises.” Deftly dodging Colbert’s attempts to get a rise out of him, Bernie did what Bernie does best, talking about universal healthcare, the minimum wage, infrastructure, criminal justice reform, free university tuition, and the one percent. Quipped Colbert, “I think those are the kind of attacks she was talking about, Bernie.” Sanders did take one small dig at Clinton, dismissing her post-election concerns with, “Secretary Clinton ran against the most unpopular candidate in the history of this country and she lost and she was upset about that and I understand that.”  

As Bernie rightly pointed out, the media—“You gestured at me” Colbert said defensively—is unhealthily interested in recreating a Bernie vs. Hillary showdown, even though neither is likely to run for president again. Probably. Hopefully. While Clinton has blamed a number of factors for her loss, including herself, the media has been obsessed by her comments that Sanders’ attacks ruined her reputation among the “Bernie Bros.”

“I think it’s a little bit silly to be keeping on talking about 2016,” said Sanders.

“I agree, and I think all of us agree that it’s important that we look forward, so let’s talk about 2016 one more time,” said Colbert.

Colbert did have one question about the future.

“Are you running again, and are you prepared to be blamed next time for Trump’s reelection?”