Seth Meyers: "Degree of Difficulty" for Trump Jokes Keeps Rising

The father-to-be scratches his head and dishes on staying agile during a complicated campaign season.
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Seth Meyers

Finding a celebrity who willingly admits when they’re wrong without being prompted by paid counsel or a career spinster is a tall order.

In short, Seth Meyers isn’t your average celebrity.

He's a current events and political junkie who cracks jokes daily as host of Late Night With Seth Meyers. And it's precisely that coveted gig and his familiarity with the unpredictable news cycle during the current campaign season that has made him a man who easily throws up his arms and shrugs his shoulders.

"I've been wrong at every turn," Meyers laughs to The Hollywood Reporter at a pre-Emmy Awards event put on by NBC and Universal Television at Eveleigh recently. "We're not where we are today where I thought we would be a month ago. I'm not smart enough to predict how it's all going to shake out, but I am smart enough to comment on it as it happens."

The source of the uncertainty can be summed up in one five-letter word: Trump.

The controversial mogul has only risen in popularity in recent weeks just as the headlines carrying his name get more chilling because of words like "protests," "riots" and "arrests." Heading into a new slate of primaries today, of which he is projected to win four of five states, Trump is getting closer to the Republican nomination.

Meyers admits that he never thought he'd live to see the day.

"I didn't think Trump was serious when he said he was going to run and when he said he was going to run, I thought he would drop out before Iowa," he recalls. "It's very humbling to do this job because you come to realize that paying attention to the news doesn't mean that you are going to know how tomorrow's news is going to go. You can read as much of yesterday's stuff as you want, but best of luck tomorrow."

Before putting all of that magic into mañana, Meyers says his team saves some for the writers' room as they remain as agile as possible in putting together a fresh show.

"The degree of difficulty in continuing to write Trump jokes is rising because you have to find new ways to comment," explains the father-to-be. (Meyers' wife, Alexi, is a few months out from delivering the couple's first child). "To his credit, he keeps finding new ways to be Donald Trump."

That said, the evolving Trump is not a punch line to his supporters, Meyers says.

"While we were joking about it, the people who are voting for Donald Trump and supporting Donald Trump weren't doing it because it was funny. Our messaging isn't the messaging that is affecting them, it's his messaging," Meyers concludes. "It's good and important to say that this isn't a joke anymore, but it doesn't change how people feel."

Then again, there's nothing wrong with a few laughs along the way. Speaking of which, Late Night airs nightly on NBC.

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