Stephen Colbert didn’t record Tuesday night’s edition of The Late Show in time to skewer President Trump‘s tweet about how close he is to the country’s nuclear launch button, so the host instead got his comedic jabs in over Twitter.
In response to North Korean leader Kim Jong-un’s speech on New Year’s Day, Trump tweeted, “North Korean Leader Kim Jong Un just stated that the ‘Nuclear Button is on his desk at all times.’ Will someone from his depleted and food starved regime please inform him that I too have a Nuclear Button, but it is a much bigger & more powerful one than his, and my Button works!”
“Please don’t make me picture your ‘Button,'” Colbert tweeted. On a slightly more serious note, he added, “…also don’t start a nuclear war, you ‘Buttonhead.'”
There was much more for Colbert to unpack from Trump’s barrage of start-of-the-year tweeting on The Late Show.
The late-night personality mocked the president for “taking all the credit” when it comes to the hope for North and South Korea’s mending relationship, for referring to the Justice Department as “the Deep State,” and for his “Church of What’s Happening Now” logic on global warming.
“Sanctions and ‘other’ pressures are beginning to have a big impact on North Korea,” Trump tweeted after reports came out about North Korean president Kim Jong-un sending a delegation to the Winter Olympics in South Korea. “Soldiers are dangerously fleeing to South Korea. Rocket man now wants to talk to South Korea for first time. Perhaps that is good news, perhaps not – we will see!”
“We will see?” Colbert said. “That’s a little nonchalant. ‘Maybe it’ll lead to peace, maybe it’ll lead to thermonuclear war. No way of knowing. I, as the president, would do something about it, but I’m too busy keeping all the planes in the sky.'”
That brings us to Trump’s tweet about commercial aviation and how there were “zero deaths in 2017.” As Colbert put it, the president, again, “took credit for something he had absolutely nothing to do with.”
But more concerning to the Late Show host was this: Trump referred to the “Deep State Justice Dept” when calling for them to “jail” “Crooked Hillary Clinton” and her aide, Huma Abedin.
“I just want to take a moment here to point out this is the President of the United States tweeting, and in his tweet, he described the Justice Department as a Deep State entity because it is so corrupt it is unwilling to throw his political opponents in jail,” Colbert dissected. “That is a serious charge, the kind of thing you can never ever make lightly and of course the kind of thing you can never take back… I’m kidding.”
White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders attempted to walk back Trump’s Deep State remark during a press conference. “Obviously, he doesn’t believe the entire Justice Department is part of that,” she told reporters.
Watch Colbert on The Late Show in the videos above.