Stephen Colbert devoted the bulk of his monologue on Monday’s “The Late Show” to the only news that really matters — the Supreme Court decision to strike down Roe v. Wade.
And as part of this, he imagined a pregnancy test that actually just tells women whether or not they still have rights. Colbert also imagined the “Law & Order” spinoff that deals with the problem of enforcing the contradictory legal nightmare now faced by many women.
At the top of the monologue, Colbert joked that last week, “we were in the Ed Sullivan theater, and today we’re in Medieval Times.” Joking that with the repeal of Roe, “reproductive rights in America lasted for less time than ‘The Young and the Restless,'” Colbert also quipped that he had wasted all the good jokes when the Supreme Court decision was first leaked back in May.
Later, Colbert noted how the decision on Friday prompted massive nationwide protests. “Turns out taking rights away from half the people in the country wasn’t popular with the people in the country,” he said.
“We know majorities don’t matter. That’s how you get this Supreme Court,” Colbert continued, referring to the fact that of the 6 justices who signed on to the decision, only one (Clarence Thomas) was appointed by a president who actually won the popular vote.
Later in the monologue, Colbert got to the question of how these laws will be enforced. “If something’s illegal, it stands to reason there’s gotta be a punishment, right?”
Then, Colbert — first joking “I am sure [he] never paid for an abortion” — played a clip of Donald Trump explaining his opinion in 2016 that if abortion is illegal, women who have abortions must be punished.
“Please, four years of you was punishment enough,” Colbert said, before using that clip as a jumping off point to talk about the issue in detail.
“So, what will the punishments be? Republicans don’t want to answer that question. A leaked memo from the National Republican Senatorial Committee said, ‘Our position should be based in compassion and reason … Republicans DO NOT want to throw doctors and mothers in jail. Mothers should be held harmless under the law.'”
“I don’t understand,” Colbert said. “‘Held harmless’ but still illegal? I can understand why you wouldn’t want women taken away in cuffs, because that would be super unpopular,” Colbert added. “So what’s it gonna be? A fine? $150 bucks plus 2 points on your sex license? ‘Cause there’s gonna have to be a sex license. Can you imagine the lines at the sex DMV? ‘Oh, this picture is terrible. My penis is blinking.'”
Colbert then noted the likelihood this court will vote to abolish the right to birth control too, and that abortion bans will probably also apply to people attempting in vitro fertilization, which prompted him to reveal a new show, “Law & Order: IVF.”
“In the criminal justice system, women are prosecuted for 2 separate but equally stupid reasons: Not wanting to have children, and wanting to have children. The whole thing is dumb dumb,” a fake bumper said. The ‘dumb dumb’ part was in place of the “Law & Order” franchises iconic transition noise.
After that, Colbert rolled a fake ad for the new test, which featured women learning, naturally, that they don’t actually have any. And it ended with this:
“Clear Rights home test. From the makers of ‘Is Your Gay Marriage Legal?’ Coming sooner than you think.”
Watch the whole monologue above.