Stephen Colbert's "Late Show" audience initially cheered loudly on Tuesday at the announcement that President Trump fired FBI Director James Comey minutes earlier, visibly vexing the comedian.
Presumably, the left-leaning audience thought this was positive news ever since Comey angered Democrats with his late-October letter to Congress announcing the discovery of emails related to Hillary Clinton's email scandal. Clinton herself has cast blame on Comey for costing her the election.
— The Late Show (@colbertlateshow) May 10, 2017
"Huge story that broke just minutes ago, less than 10 minutes ago. FBI Director James Comey has just been fired by Donald Trump," Colbert said on his CBS show, as the crowd whooped and applauded.
Colbert chuckled and looked confused, before joking, "Huge, huge Donald Trump fans here tonight."
Colbert, a fierce critic of Trump, went on to quip that Trump owed Comey a favor for helping him win the presidential election. He then explained why the firing was controversial: Comey was leading an FBI investigation into possible ties between the Russians and Trump's campaign.
Once Colbert announced Comey's dismissal came at Attorney General Jeff Sessions' recommendation, the crowd booed accordingly.
Comey's firing sparked outrage by Democrats, who are calling for a special prosecutor and saying it is a White House cover-up. Some Republicans have also expressed dismay at Trump's move, including Senate Intelligence Committee chairman Richard Burr (R., N.C.), who called it "troubling."
UPDATE May 10, 9:03 A.M.: An earlier version of this article said "Comey chuckled" when it was supposed to say "Colbert chuckled."