Even though they don't work Saturdays, many late-night hosts were up early replying to the president's latest attempt to stoke culture-war fires.
After a Fox and Friends segment critiqued many late show hosts for taking “a hard turn to the left," Trump weighed in, tweeting, “Late Night host(s) are dealing with the Democrats for their very ‘unfunny’ & repetitive material, always anti-Trump! Should we get Equal Time?”
The FCC's Fairness Doctrine says political candidates should be treated equally by broadcast television stations when it comes to selling or giving away air time. Over the years, the commission has broadly exempted news programs, including late-night talk shows, from the provision. (Need the TL;DR version?)
Mike DiCenzo, a writer and producer for NBC’s The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon, explained that the rule guarantees candidates are given equal time during election season, not 24/7/365.
“That’s not how it works. You’re not campaigning. You’re the president,” he tweeted. “Now kindly stop tweeting nonsense and go do your job for once.”
Seth Meyers, who has been among the most vocal Trump critics, immediately tweeted back that he’d “love” to have Trump on his NBC show, and sarcastically provided his studio address as “15 Penguin Avenue, Antarctica.”
ABC’s Jimmy Kimmel, another critic, replied directly to Trump's tweet, saying, “Excellent point, Mr. President! You should quit that boring job - I’ll let you have my show ALL to yourself #MAGA.”
And Comedy Central’s Daily Show responded by posting — “in the spirit of equal time”— Trump’s now infamous off-camera comments in 2005 to an Access Hollywood host in which he used coarse language to boast about groping women.
Contributing: Associated Press