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Stephen Colbert Makes a Run for the DNC Stage: ‘I’m With Her!’

Stephen ColbertStephen Colbert
Comedian Stephen Colbert dives on the stage as security moves in while recording a program as preparations are underway ahead of the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia, Sunday, July 24, 2016. Paul Sancya — AP

Stephen Colbert is counting on another week of live shows, and another convention, to provide a ratings boost.

Colbert kicked off his second week of live, politically-focused episodes of The Late Show on CBS with a trippy, 1960s-inspired original song about Hillary Clinton and the Democratic National Convention, which got underway Monday in Philadelphia. Decked out in full hippie regalia and surrounded by “flower girl” dancers, Colbert came onstage singing about how “the party of the donkey is about the get funky” at the DNC, where Clinton is expected to accept the Democratic nomination for president.

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The theme of the song, entitled “Death, Taxes, and Hillary,” was the inevitability of Clinton receiving the nomination, even despite the strong challenge from Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders. “You may have felt the Bern, but now it’s time to learn she is your destiny,” Colbert sang during the show’s opening.

Also from the song: “Throw your hands in the air and wave them like you care. You must rejoice, there is no choice, she is your destiny. Death, taxes, and Hillary!”

Meanwhile, later in his (non-melodic) monologue, Colbert jokingly said the opening of the four-day DNC was “also known as ‘Hillary Clinton and the terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day”—a reference to the Wikileaks scandal in which the Democratic National Committee currently finds itself embroiled. The controversy dominated news coverage of the DNC’s opening day, as a strong contingent of Sanders supporters voiced their disenchantment with the party—with protests outside the convention, as well as with boos inside the convention hall—after evidence showed the strong-arm tactics the DNC used against Sanders in the primary,

When he wasn’t making light of the Wikileaks debacle, Colbert was showing video from his trip to Philadelphia earlier in the day, where—dressed as his Hunger Games parody character Julius Flickerman—he teased DNC security before sprinting onto the convention’s podium; wearing a bright blue wig and carrying a stuffed weasel, he said, “I’m with her!” He was escorted away.
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Colbert pulled off a similar stunt at last week’s Republican National Convention in Cleveland. After finding success with the live, post-convention format during last week’s RNC, Colbert has to be hoping that another week focused on the type of political comedy that has resonated with audiences in the past (on his previous show, Comedy Central’s Colbert Report) can help boost The Late Show‘s standing in the late-night TV ratings.

While a reunion with Jon Stewart helped bring in bigger audiences last week, Colbert will be welcoming another fellow late-night comedian, HBO’s John Oliver, as a guest later this week, while other upcoming guests include actor Jeff Daniels, historian Doris Kearns Goodwin, and Broad City creators Ilana Glazer and Abbi Jacobson.