“I’ll have some more to say about this over there at the desk later, assuming we make it past the commercial break.”
CBS’ Late Show host Stephen Colbert wasted no time in addressing the sexual harassment controversy surrounding network CEO Leslie Moonves on Monday night’s show.
At the opening of his monologue, Colbert jokingly questioned the story’s validity until he revealed that Ronan Farrow, who previously helped expose Harvey Weinstein’s sexual harassment and assault in a New Yorker article, had written the piece.
“That’s not good,” Colbert said, performing a spit take from a glass of brown liquid, presumably liquor. He then took an extra sip from his glass.
“Ronan isn’t exactly known for his puff pieces about GLAMPing,” Colbert quipped.
The host then noted that CBS would be performing an investigation into the claims against Moonves, saying they could have just used an in-house investigation from the new series “CSI: CEO.”
Colbert then moved on to other topics but promised, “I’ll have some more to say about this over there at the desk later, assuming we make it past the commercial break.”
When the show returned from its first break, Colbert continued to address Moonves and the Me Too movement at large. “Its strange to have to say this, but powerful men taking advantage of relatively powerless employees is wrong,” he said. “We know it’s wrong now, and we knew it was wrong then. How do we know? Because the men tried to keep the story from coming out then.”
Speaking to his personal relationship with Moonves, Colbert said, “I believe in accountability. Everybody believes in accountability until it’s their guy, and make no mistake: Les Moonves is my guy.”
He went on to recount how Moonves was responsible for his position as host of the late-night show and that Moonves “stood by us when people were mad at me, and I like him.”
He concluded by saying, “Accountability is meaningless unless it’s for everybody, whether it’s the leader of a network or the leader of the free world.”