CNN’s Jake Tapper on Wednesday joined Stephen Colbert on CBS’ “The Late Show” to discuss Donald Trump and the current state of politics in the United States—and ended up making the late night comedy feel “a little” worse in the process.
Colbert welcomed Tapper by offering him an apple, a reference to a recent—and widely mocked—CNN ad subtly aimed at the Trump administration’s penchant for lies.
Tapper, discussing his role as a broadcaster, explained, “there aren’t two sides when it comes to the truth, there’s one side: the truth.”
Colbert asked Tapper about Sen. Jeff Flake (R-AZ), who announced Tuesday he would not seek reelection and capped his announcement with a remarkable speech about Trumpism. Colbert was bothered by Flake’s decision to tap out of the Senate race.
“That is a message of despair,” Colbert said. “That is saying the truth can’t win.”
“Yeah, that’s right,” Tapper said. “Well, the truth can’t win a Republican primary in Arizona, is what he’s saying.”
Pointing to Flakes assertion that the possibility of running for president in 2020 did not factor into his decision to speak out against Trump, Tapper explained that he loves that defense from politicians.
“I can tell you that I’m not running for president in 2020,” Tapper said.
“But the door is open,” Colbert replied. “No one was saying anything about your running for president until you brought it up right now. Now it’s out there, Jake, it’s out there on a national program, it just came out.”
“That’s an apple, Jake,” Colbert joked, throwing an apple on the desk. “Don’t banana me.”
“I have no plans to eat that apple,” Tapper replied, before coyly adding, “currently.”
At the end of their discussion, Colbert admitted that while he’s happy to have Tapper on, “usually it’s a more hopeful conversation the two of us have.”
“You feel worse though?” Tapper asked.
“A little worse,” Colbert replied.
“But that’s actually my job,” Tapper said. “I’m not supposed to make you feel better, I’m supposed to tell you what’s actually going on.”
“We’re not here to sugarcoat it—it’s an apple,” Tapper joked.