With just a few days left before the midterm elections, Trump’s most recent White House address focused on fear-mongering rhetoric about immigrants. The Late Show’s Stephen Colbert did a close reading in an attempt to decipher what exactly the President was saying. He opened the address by emphasizing the welcoming nature of America, especially under his administration. “Good plan, Mr. President,” said Colbert, “warm up the crowd with a joke.”
Trump then moved on to congratulate himself on the good work that his administration does on immigration, even when “the laws are so bad,” though he clarifies that, “it’s not that they’re old, they’re just bad.” Colbert jokes that it is the President “who is both old and bad.” Trump dismissed the idea that the migrants in the caravan are asylum seekers, claiming that they just memorize a statement they don’t actually believe in. “My god, could you believe someone telling a federal official a phrase they didn’t believe in?” asked Colbert, before showing footage of the President swearing to protect the U.S. Constitution during his inauguration.
Last week, the caravan had a confrontation with police as they crossed the Mexican border. Around 6 police officers were wounded, as the migrants threw shoes and rocks at them. Trump said he is telling troops to consider rocks as firearms (never mind that this violates the standard rules of engagement). “What do you think AR-15 stands for?” asks Colbert. “A Rock 15 And I’m being told NRA now stands for The National Rock Association.” Since the President is an expert on the subject, he assures his follower that “women don’t want them in our country, women want security.” Colbert helpfully spells out the subtext: “Believe me, because I am the embodiment of what women do not want.”
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