Late-night hosts laugh off White House's 'insane' claim that Trump ended the pandemic
On Wednesday, the White House released a press release that is sure to be "such a relief to the 74,000 Americans who tested positive yesterday," James Corden said on The Late Late Show later that night.
The Trump administration's Office of Science and Technology Policy credited the president with "ending the COVID-19 pandemic" as one of the top accomplishments of Donald Trump's first term. Naturally, Stephen Colbert, Jimmy Fallon, and the other late-night hosts had something to say about this "insane" assertion.
According to the CDC, there have been 503,783 new cases of the novel coronavirus in the U.S. in the last seven days. The total cases have surpassed 8.7 million and the total deaths are now close to 226,000.
"Clearly, we're a long way from ending the COVID-19 pandemic," Colbert said on A Late Show. "On the other hand, yesterday a new White House press release announced that one of Trump's biggest accomplishments is 'ending the COVID-19 pandemic.' Now, while that is clearly insane, declaring victory prematurely is a proud Republican tradition." Colbert then pivoted to a photo of former President George W. Bush from when he claimed "Mission Accomplished" in the Iraq War, though it would continue for several years.
The host compared Trump to the tyrannical Nero for making such a claim on the pandemic: "At this point, Trump's not just Nero fiddling while Rome burns, he's Nero sending out a press release that says, 'You're not on fire.' I'd say this is Donald Trump peeing on our leg and telling us it's raining, but he usually pays prostitutes to do that."
Fallon came prepped with loads of zingers had he looked totally dumbfounded at the release statement.
"What?! That's like the Tampa Bay Rays listing their biggest accomplishment as 2020 Word Series champions," he joked. "Seriously, the coronavirus is like, 'Ending the pandemic? Thanks to you, we just got picked up for three more seasons.'"
The Tonight Show host was surprised the Trump White House had a science office, which he imagines is just "Eric and Don Jr. wearing Bill Nye Halloween costumes." "To be fair," Fallon added, "lying on his resume is one of the most relatable things trump's ever done."
Fallon recalled a moment on The Weakest Link where a contestant thought Ahmir Thompson was known more famously as Fred Flintstone. "Someone hasn't been that far off since…" Fallon began before cutting to the clip from that episode.
In the comedy business, Corden says the White House's claim about Trump ending the pandemic is called "committing to the bit."
Jimmy Kimmel addressed the report briefly on Jimmy Kimmel Live, saying, "That's good news... You won't see that on MSDNC." The late-night personality was more focused on Kim Kardashian, who was dragged on social media for posting photos from a family and friends trip to a private island.
"I wonder if anyone told her she's allowed to have a party and not post pictures of it," Kimmel quipped. "People really went nuts on this one. They're saying this could potentially derail Kanye's presidential campaign."