Late-Night Hosts Unpack Trump's 2020 Campaign Announcement

The Late Show with Stephen Colbert - November 6, 2018 live show  - Publicity 2-H 2018
Scott Kowalchyk/CBS

Trevor Noah argued that Trump's Orlando speech was an "exact replica" of his 2016 monologues.

It came as no surprise to any late-night hosts that Trump announced his 2020 re-election campaign on Tuesday. Still, that didn't stop the comedians from breaking down the way in which Trump decided to unveil the news.

The Late Show's Stephen Colbert noted that Trump's rhetoric while president remained the same as when he was on the 2016 campaign trail. Of Trump's announcement-night claim during his announcement that "Democrats want to splinter us into factions and tribes, they want us divided," Colbert joked, "Yes. Democrats want to divide Americans into tribes who can't stand each other, says the man speaking to an angry mob all wearing the same hats."

Colbert also pointed out a notable logical fallacy in Trump's announcement speech. Imagining what the U.S. government would be like if governed by Democrats after the 2020 election, he said, "They would shut down your free speech, use the power of the law to punish their opponents, which they're trying to do now."

Colbert countered, "At least, he clearly understands that using the power of your office to prosecute your political enemies is wrong." The show then excerpted clips of Trump calling Hillary Clinton "crooked Hillary" and leading the crowd in "lock her up!" chants.

Over on The Daily Show, host Trevor Noah argued the 2020 announcement speech rehashed the format of Trump's 2016 campaign speeches. "In fact, when we put his speeches from 2016 with the one from last night, well, you tell me if you can spot anything new." The clip compilation then compared Trump's mentions of "drain the swamp," "crooked Hillary," the superlative "of all time" and "I will never, ever let you down."

Faced with this compilation of clips, Noah joked, "Trump 2020, now in stereo."

On Tuesday night during his announcement in Orlando, Fla., Trump talked about the economy and also took a jab at one of his favorite rhetorical punching bags, the media, leading the crowd in a lively chant of "CNN Sucks!" Between bouts spent decrying "fake news," Trump included an insult to the Academy Awards' ratings. 

"That is a lot of fake news back there," Trump told the crowd. "The amount of press we have tonight reminds me of the Academy Awards before it went political and the ratings went down the tubes," he said.

Meanwhile, Jimmy Kimmel Live! addressed the campaign announcement with a jab from host Kimmel at the top of the show. "President Trump kicked off his 2020 comedy tour last night in Orlando," he said. "There were more red hats and dirty beards than an unsanctioned Santa convention at this thing." Kimmel went on to compare the atmosphere to a music festival, "specifically, the Fyre Festival," he quipped, adding "Trump was on fire, or at least his pants were. He jumped around from lie to lie, from hot topic to hot topic like Joy Behar on Adderall."

The late-night host later referred to the President as "Daddy Trump" who "had some bigly whoppers last night." Launching into those whoppers, Kimmel said, "He said the Russia investigation was illegal — which it wasn’t.  He said wall construction is moving very rapidly — which it isn’t. He said air quality is getting better — when it’s getting worse. He claimed he made the number one — America the number one oil and gas producer — which he didn’t."

Over on The Tonight Show, host Jimmy Fallon told his viewers that Trump had kicked off his campaign for the 2020 presidential election with a rally and festival. "Or as his supporters are calling it, Wallapalooza," he joked.

Fallon added that Trump spent most of the event "bashing" immigrants, Hillary Clinton and journalists. "Everyone watching at home was like, 'Is this a summer rerun? I've seen this before,'" he said.

During the event, Trump asked the audience if they liked the slogan "Make America Great Again" or "Keep America Great" better. Fallon added with his Trump impression, "There's a third option. Are you ready? 'Make Keeping America Great Again Great Again.'"

"After that he was like, 'Who do you think will win The Bachelorette? Luke P. or Jed?'" joked Fallon.

The host added that The White House announced that Trump planned to keep his slogan from the 2016 election, as well as the red MAGA hat merchandise. "It's like when your kid only wants to wear that one superhero outfit to school and you're like, 'Whatever gets you on the bus. Come on, let's go,'" he said.