Brow Beat

The Late Show Spoofs Sean Hannity’s On-Air Backflip on the New York Times’ Mueller Firing Report

On Monday’s Late Show, long-time Fox News satirist Stephen Colbert parodied something that didn’t really need spoofing: Fox’s coverage of reports that Trump tried to fire Robert Mueller.

When an explosive report from the New York Times on Thursday revealed that Trump had tried to fire the special prosecutor last June, Trump-friendly commentator and “final hole of the world’s worst putt-putt course” Sean Hannity changed his on-air tack so fast it gave Colbert whiplash.

Hannity at first tried to undermine the report, calling it a “distraction.” “Our sources—and I’ve checked in with many of them—they’re not confirming that tonight,” he said. But when the news was confirmed by other Fox figures, Hannity was forced to perform a shameless on-air reveresal—from denial to defense—within the space of the same show. “Yeah, maybe, Donald Trump wanted to fire the special counsel for conflict—does he not have the right to raise those questions?” Hannity asked, less than an hour later, before quickly pivoting to a story about a police chase car accident.

In a Fox News parody that was unfortunately no The Colbert Report, Real News Tonight hosts Jim Anchorton and Jill Newslady hammed up Hannity’s acrobatics.

“More lies from the Fake Failing New York Times,” said Newslady. “Trump never tried to fire Robert Mueller, and that story will never change.”

“This just in, breaking news,” she added, as she was handed a piece of paper. “Trump did try to fire Robert Mueller.”

“Good for him,” chimed in a befuddled Anchorton. “He gets to do that.”

“More on why this is good as we figure it out,” said Newslady before cutting to another story, an equally apt, though much more heavy-handed metaphor for the Trump administration as the car crash: A massive fire at the turd factory.