Colbert Mocks Trump’s Sweeping Executive Powers Claim: Nixon’s Ghost is ‘What the Hell? Can I Have a Redo?’


Late Show host Stephen Colbert mocked the sweeping executive power privileges claimed by President Donald Trump’s attorney general and other administration officials, saying “Right now, Nixon’s ghost is ‘What the hell? Can I get a redo?'”

Earlier in the day, the White House had released a 12-page letter that asserted the presidency had broad amnesty from Congressional oversight and that the administration would refuse to comply with any further requests for documents of testimony about Russian interference into the 2016 presidential election.

This move comes after Attorney General Bill Barr claimed a president had the right to fire investigators looking into misconduct by the White House if he or she thought there was no underlying crime. These muscular interpretations of presidential power by the Trump administration strongly evoke the infamous claim made by former President Richard Nixon in 1977, years after he was impeached and then resigned in disgrace, that “When the president does it, that means it is not illegal.”

Quoting the White House counsel letter in part, Colbert noted “Trump’s lawyers argue that by trying to investigate Trump’s corruption, Congress is ‘assuming the powers of the Department of Justice, which is within the executive branch, which is controlled by the president. So the only person, by this logic, allowed to investigate Trump, is Trump himself.”

Unable to resist the idea of Trump’s potential self-flagellation, as it were, Colbert pantomimed knocking on a bathroom door: “Donald what’s going on in there?”

“Don’t come in. I’m investigating myself! And I’m almost exonerated. Soooo close.”

Watch the video above, via CBS

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