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Late-Night Hosts Deconstruct "Hurricane Trump's" Press Conference

The Hollywood Reporter logo The Hollywood Reporter 2/17/2017 Jennifer Konerman

President Donald Trump's press conference Thursday was meant to announce Alexander Acosta as his new pick for labor secretary, but as many late-night hosts noted, things quickly went awry. 

Trump shifted focus to the "incredible progress" of his administration thus far, even though, according to him, he "inherited a mess." He then continued to slam the "dishonest" media, claiming "the press should be ashamed of themselves." 

During Late Night's "Closer Look" segment on Thursday, Seth Meyers broke down the events of the day, even shredding the night's old script which was written before the news conference, but then Trump held a "bats--- crazy press conference that rendered this script completely meaningless," Meyers explained. 

The host addressed Trump's tactics of avoiding questions during press conferences, including "the drift-away" move, and when he simply pretends to not hear questions he doesn't want to answer.

On Trump's claim during the news conference that he wasn't "ranting and raving," Meyers added: "But again, what president hasn't had to say 'I'm not ranting and raving'? Who could forget Lincoln's tirade at Gettysburg, or FDR's fireside meltdowns, and of course, Ronald Reagan's famously saying, 'Mr Gorbachev, if you don't tear down this f------ wall I'm gonna lose my s---!'" 

"Trump offered this pretty racist response," Meyers added when a black reporter asked the president about a meeting with the Congressional Black Caucus. "It's racist to assume all black people know each other," said Meyers. "You don't know all orange people. Hey Donald, can you set up a meeting with Snookie and the Lorax?" 

Trevor Noah took a similar approach. "We had a really nice show planned for you," Noah began. "Then in the middle of the day, Hurricane Trump happened. Again."

Showing clips of Trump defending himself against the press who say he "rants and raves," Noah said, in his best inebriated Trump impression, "I'm not drunk, you're all drunk. You're all drunk. This is my mother------- house ..."

On The Late Show, Stephen Colbert tried to explain the press conference, but words initially failed him. "He started off by defending the rough start his administration's had by immediately attacking America's true enemy: Anybody but him." 

When Trump said he "inherited a mess," Colbert countered: "No, you inherited a fortune, we elected a mess." 

In The Tonight Show's cold open, Jimmy Fallon brought back his Trump impression for his own version of the conference. "Buckle, because I'm coming in hot." 

"First of all, you're all fake news. I hate you all very much, and thank you for being here," he said in character. "First question? No. Next."


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