Congress Decides It No Longer Likes Stephen Colbert

The legislative branch gives Colbert the cold shoulder

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Comedian Stephen Colbert has become persona non grata following his mock testimony before a congressional subcommittee last week. According to Politico, members of congress from both parties are fed up with his antics and are now refusing to appear on his show:

“My experience with that show is like herpes. It never goes away, and it itches and sometimes flares up,” said a former aide to Rep. Lynn Westmoreland, after his boss appeared on the show in 2006... The episode has “haunted” the office for years, the former aide said. “I deeply regret letting him go on ‘The Colbert Report.’

Does Colbert deserve to be snubbed or should congress lighten up?

  • Settle Down, Congress, writes Glynnis MacNicol at Mediaite: "Based on what we’ve seen in this election year I am going to hazard a guess that having Stephen Colbert make them look stupid is the least of Congress’ worries."

  • Colbert's Only Trying to Ridicule People, said Rep. Barney Frank, a Massachusetts Democrat:

"I have done many comedic interviews, but I did not appreciate his humor," Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.) told POLITICO, after being teased about being gay during his segment. "I did not understand that his mission was to make every politician look ridiculous. ... If I had a chance to do it again, I would only do it live."

  • Colbert Shouldn't Have Testified, writes liberal columnist Ruth Marcus of The Washington Post:  "I have no problem if Lady Gaga and Harry Reid, on don’t ask, don’t tell—or Snooki and John McCain on the tanning tax—are Twitter pals. But Colbert’s testimony was not history repeating itself as farce—it was history starting as farce. That’s to be expected when lawmakers appear, at their own risk, on “The Colbert Report.” But there is a difference between lawmakers electing to be a prop in Colbert’s show and letting Colbert turn their show into his prop. And that’s what happened before the House Judiciary Committee’s immigration subcommittee."

  • It Wasn't That Bad, counters Rep. Bill Pascrell, a New Jersey Democrat. "“Aw, give me a break, would you please? We’ve got serious problems — come on, look! We took ourselves so seriously, people’s expectations rose, and we couldn’t meet them. ‘Get a life,’ I tell those people.”

  • His Testimony Dumbed Down the Immigration Issue, writes conservative columnist Jonah Goldberg of the L.A. Times: "Colbert's testimony reduced the topic to a black-and-white issue in which people on the other side are fools or bigots worthy of mockery. I thought the whole point of Colbert was to stand against that sort of thing by making fun of it, not by doing it. Are our politics really improved by making congressional hearings even more of a joke?"

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