UPDATE, with video Vladimir Putin not only hates democracy and has a personal grudge against Hillary Clinton, but he’s also a manspreader, Clinton told Stephen Colbert on CBS’ The Late Show tonight.
“I don’t take it personally,” Clinton said of Putin’s anti-Americanism, which she told Colbert was stoked by the collapse of the Soviet Union, “I think it’s part of his world view.” But, she suggested, Putin certainly exhibited sexism, as evidenced by his inclination to manspread.
As any New Yorker knows, manspreading is what happens when male subway riders take up more space than they should – by spreading their legs wider than they should.
Clinton said Putin showed his sexism in other ways, too, like when he told her of his enthusiasm over tagging Russia’s polar bears and then, after she showed interest in his conservation efforts, asked her if Bill would be interested in joining him.
Clinton, the Late Show‘s first guest since Colbert returned from hosting the Emmys, described herself as “Paula Revere” in sounding the alarm about Russia’s efforts to interfere with U.S. elections.
“I believe so strongly that they think they succeeded in messing with our democracy,” she told Colbert. Asked if she believes they succeeded in influencing voters, Clinton said, “Yes, I do,” and warned that “They will be back in 2018 and 2020 unless we stop them.”
Clinton also said that despite her belief about Russian interference, and even if evidence turns up that Team Trump colluded or communicated with the Team Putin, she is “not talking about contesting the election.”
“There is not a mechanism” for that, she said, adding that any questions raised about the president’s legitimacy should be demonstrated “at the ballot box.”
As for criticism that her book What Happened prevents Democrats from moving on – which carries the suggestion that perhaps she should do the same – Clinton joked, “If they’d take up a collection and send me somewhere really nice…” before turning serious with, “I am not going anywhere.”
Earlier tonight, CBS tweeted a snippet of the interview in which Clinton took to task Trump for his “dark, dangerous” speech to the UN General Assembly.
“I thought it was very dark, dangerous, not the kind of message that the leader of the greatest nation in the world should be delivering,” she said of the speech, in which Trump among other things said “major portions of the world are in conflict and some, in fact, are going to hell,” and added that if the U.S. is forced to defend itself or its allies, “we will have no choice but to totally destroy North Korea. Rocket Man is on a suicide mission for himself and for his regime.”
“What I hoped the President would have said,” Clinton continued about the speech, specifically the North Korea threat, “was something along the lines of, you know, we view this as dangerous to our allies, to the region, and even to our country. We call on all nations to work with us to try to end the threat posed by Kim Jung Un, and not call him Rocket Man, the old Elton John song, but to say, clearly, we will not tolerate any attacks on our friends or ourselves.
“But you should lead with diplomacy, you should lead with the commitment of trying to avoid conflict however you can.”