Biden Hopes Trump’s Presidency Will Be the ‘Exception’ in U.S. History

Biden Hopes Trump’s Presidency Will Be the ‘Exception’ in U.S. History


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Former Vice President Joe Biden appeared on “The Late Show” to promote his new book, a memoir.

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CBS

Welcome to Best of Late Night, a rundown that lets you sleep — and lets us get paid to watch comedy. What do you think of it? What else are you interested in? Let us know: thearts@nytimes.com.

Biden Critiques Trump and Demurs on 2020

Former Vice President Joe Biden appeared on “The Late Show” on Monday for the first time since President Trump took office. Speaking to Stephen Colbert, Mr. Biden said he hoped Mr. Trump’s presidency would be remembered as an outlier.

STEPHEN COLBERT: One of the things that many people said when President Trump was elected: that we have to hold on to certain standards, and we can’t normalize the behavior that got President Trump elected. But on another level, whoever is the president is, you know, de facto presidential. What do you think has changed about the presidency with him being president? Or how will this influence future presidencies?

JOE BIDEN: I think, God willing, it will go down as the single exception in American history. [Applause] Look, I think that a lot of the folks in the audience, my guess is, when the president was elected and the political people he gathered around him came into play, you kind of thought, ‘Well, maybe it’s amusing, or a little bit embarrassing sometimes.’ But it didn’t go to the heart of who we were. But I’ll lay you eight-to-five, and I’m speaking to a large crowd — a Republican audience — out in Thousand Oaks, California, and I asked the same question. I said, ‘How many of you are now worried about the stability of the republic? How many of you are now worried about this new phony nationalism that’s us against them? How many are worried about this populism that is designed to essentially undermine the essence of the Bill of Rights, which is, there are certain inalienable rights that nobody, no matter what the majority is, they cannot overrule? I mean, I just think there’s an attack on a system. And I think people are worried.”

Video by The Late Show With Stephen Colbert

Mr. Biden was on the show to promote a new memoir, “Promise Me, Dad,” which tells of how he dealt with the death of his son Beau. Mr. Biden is already the subject of rumors about a possible presidential run in 2020, and he did not dispel those rumors while explaining the “promise” that gave the book its name.

“That was the promise: ‘Promise me, Dad, you’re going to stay engaged. It wasn’t, ‘Promise me, Dad, you’re going to run for president,’” Mr. Biden said, adding: “He did want me to run for president, but that wasn’t the promise. Barack asked me — the president asked me at lunch one day when Beau was sick, he said, ‘What do you want to do with the rest of your life?’ And I said, ‘I want to do what I’ve done — the same answer I would have given you when I was 29, when I was 39, and my age right now. I want to make a difference, and I think I can.”

‘Thou Shalt Not Be Gross’

Video by The Daily Show With Trevor Noah

Most late-night hosts spent a solid chunk of their shows attacking Roy Moore, the Republican Senate candidate from Alabama who has now been accused of sexual misconduct by five women. Trevor Noah zeroed in on Mr. Moore’s identity as a conservative Christian.

“So, Roy Moore defines himself completely by the Bible — except for the parts about ‘Thou shalt not be gross.’” — TREVOR NOAH

Video by Late Night With Seth Meyers

Seth Meyers made fun of how difficult it seemed to be for Mr. Moore to give a straight answer during an interview with Sean Hannity of Fox News.

“That whole time Sean Hannity gives him so many chances to defend himself, and he just cannot answer a yes-or-no question. ‘O.K., but you never stole a bus full of 16-year-olds and brought them to a secret lair, right?’ ‘Well, it certainly doesn’t sound like something I would do. I mean, I don’t remember being on a bus but, you know, if somebody said I did then that might be a case of, you know, two different memories. I remember, uh, a bus-like vehicle.’” — SETH MEYERS



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