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Stephen Colbert explains why his staffers are not insurrectionists

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Yudi Sherman

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Yudi Sherman

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Shining a spotlight on media and government disinformation.

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Thu, Jun 23, 2022

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01:13 AM

'I’m shocked I have to explain the difference'

Stephen Colbert explains why his staffers are not insurrectionists

Late-night talk show host Stephen Colbert Monday defended his production crew who were arrested last week for trespassing on Capitol grounds, explaining why they’re not insurrectionists. 

As reported by America’s Frontline News, seven staffers on the production team for The Late Show with Stephen Colbert were arrested Friday while trespassing the Longworth House Office Building, an office building for House Representatives which is part of the Capitol complex. The crew were reportedly let in by Rep. Adam Schiff’s (D-CA) staff after earlier interviewing Schiff, Rep. Jake Auchincloss (D-MA), and Stephanie Murphy (D-FL) related to the January 6 Committee hearings.   

The crew members were uninvited, had no passes and no escort. According to reports, the “Colbert 7” were “loud, disruptive” and “theatrical” and were banging on the doors of House Republicans. They were arrested by Capitol police near Rep. Lauren Boebert’s (R-CO) and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy’s (R-CA) offices and charged with trespassing. 

But Colbert explained in his opening monologue Monday that they’re not insurrectionists. 

“Until the next night when a couple of the TV people started claiming my puppet squad ‘committed insurrection’ at the U.S. Capitol Building,” Colbert said. 

“I’m shocked I have to explain the difference,” he added. “But an insurrection involves disrupting the lawful actions of Congress and howling for the blood of elected leaders, all to prevent the peaceful transfer of power — this was first-degree puppetry.” 

Except many January 6 attendees are not being charged with disrupting lawful actions, howling for politicians’ blood or obstructing justice. They’re being charged with the same misdemeanor as Colbert’s staff: trespassing. 

One day prior to the Colbert 7’s incursion, physician, attorney and human rights activist Dr. Simone Gold was sentenced to 60 days in federal prison, one-year supervised release and a $9,500 fine for trespassing on Capitol grounds on January 6th, for which she has been labeled an “insurrectionist”. 

Like Colbert’s staff, Dr. Gold had permission to be on Capitol grounds earlier in the day. But unlike Colbert’s staff, who refused orders by Capitol Police to vacate the premises, Dr. Gold left immediately upon request by a Capitol policeman. 

The Colbert 7 spent a night in jail and were released the next day. They are expected to be issued fines which will likely be paid by CBS. 

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