Our Late Night Hosts Are Letting Us Down With These Presidential Candidate Interviews

With the real election approaching we need far more scrutiny from our funny men—and woman

In back to back nights, Jimmy Kimmel had Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders on his late night show, and honestly, can we get Samantha Bee on this assignment instead?

The remaining presidential hopefuls made the talk show rounds towards the end of last year, too, when it was more forgivable to do totally puffy interviews, but now we are coming down to the final leg of the primary race and these people need to be asked some real questions.

Between the two interviews, Kimmel was marginally more effective with Trump. He at least asked him about the bathroom laws that are metastasizing throughout the southern states and got him to admit that his previous endorsements of Hillary Clinton were just a whole lot of opportunistic hot air. There wasn’t a lot of back and forth, but at least he asked him something of substance.

With Sanders, though, it was just a whole lot of banter. They touched on the transgender bathroom laws a little, but the least Kimmel could have done was mention what his continued campaign and increasingly divisive rhetoric against Clinton will mean for the Democratic party when it has to rally around one nominee just a few months from now.

When Trump was on just the day before Sanders, Kimmel asked if he was enjoying watching the two liberals pick each other apart, and Trump clearly appeared delighted—as he should be! This could not have provided a better setup for subsequently asking Sanders about how continued infighting on his side is giving a boost to Trump, but, nah. Let’s just talk about him being a poor gift giver instead.

It’s all just so… tepid. And yeah this is late night TV, not some debate on CNN moderated by Donna Brazile, but we know it doesn’t have to be this way. Jimmy Fallon is the human equivalent of a shelf elf, and that’s his whole deal. We know he’s not going to go hard in the paint on candidates. But if Kimmel is going to get the great opportunity to talk to people aspiring to the highest office in the land during the most insane, polarizing presidential race in memory, he has to step his game up.

Stephen Colbert has been better than the others in his cohort. He actually asked Sanders how he plans to fund his wonderfully intentioned but seemingly impossible to achieve plans like free college educations for everyone, and he put Trump on the spot for his insane Mexico-will-build-our-border wall idea. He also had Hillary Clinton explaining how letting the banks fail is a better move for the economy. And yet, you just felt in your bones that Colbert of the Report years would have had sharper teeth with all of them.

John Oliver is doing some of the best long form investigative “journalism” on TV, but while Trevor Noah is doing his best at The Daily Show he’s still no Jon Stewart, and Oliver can’t be our only discernable signal amidst the noise. With Colbert looking de-fanged and Kimmel and Fallon unwilling to be our after-11:00 pm crusaders, we’re hoping Samantha Bee and Full Frontal can step up and start doing some interviews on her show—at least for the rest of election season. Among her cable companions she’s been the most unsparing critic of all the candidate’s political bullshit, and someone needs to let Sanders, Clinton, Trump et al that a couch conversation doesn’t just mean a free pass to serve up hot dishes of spin and witty repartee.

Because this election is coming whether we want it to or not, and lying down on the floor isn’t going to help anyone.


Some beauty pageants, like the Miss America competition, have done away with the swimsuit portions of the competitions, thus dipping their toes in the 21st century. Other aspects of beauty pageants remain stuck in the 1950s, and we're not even talking about the whole "judging women mostly on their looks" thing. One beauty pageant winner was disqualified for being a mom, as if you can't be beautiful after you've had a kid. Now she's trying to get the Miss World competition to update their rules.

Veronika Didusenko won the Miss Ukraine pageant in 2018. After four days, she was disqualified because pageant officials found out she was a mom to 5-year-old son Alex, and had been married. Didusenko said she had been aware of Miss World's rule barring mother from competing, but was encouraged to compete anyways by pageant organizers.

Keep Reading Show less

One mystery in our universe is a step closer to being solved. NASA's Parker Solar Probe launched last year to help scientists understand the sun. Now, it has returned its first findings. Four papers were published in the journal Nature detailing the findings of Parker's first two flybys. It's one small step for a solar probe, one giant leap for mankind.

It is astounding that we've advanced to the point where we've managed to build a probe capable of flying within 15 million miles from the surface of the sun, but here we are. Parker can withstand temperatures of up to 2,500 degrees Fahrenheit and travels at 430,000 miles per hour. It's the fastest human-made vehicle, and no other human-made object has been so close to the sun.

Keep Reading Show less
via Sportstreambest / Flickr

Since the mid '90s the phrase "God Forgives, Brothers Don't" has been part of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point's football team's lexicon.

Over the past few years, the team has taken the field flying a black skull-and-crossbones flag with an acronym for the phrase, "GFBD" on the skull's upper lip. Supporters of the team also use it on social media as #GFBD.

Keep Reading Show less