Melania Trump made a rare public appearance Monday on “The Late Show With Stephen Colbert” — at least, a version of her did.
Laura Benanti returned to the late night show to reprise her role as the former First Lady, and when asked about her feelings towards Stormy Daniels, the adult film actress at the center of Donald Trump’s indictment by the Manhattan DA, Benanti’s Melania extended grace and empathy.
“Honestly, I feel bad for that woman, Strumy Daniel,” she said. “I know what she has been through — worst 90 seconds of your life.”
Trump’s indictment hinges on a sum of hush money the former president paid Daniels in the final weeks of his 2016 presidential campaign to cover up an alleged affair. Though Trump’s arraignment has dominated the news, the real Melania Trump has also gained a fair amount of attention due to her notable absence. She did not appear during her husband’s court proceedings, nor was she present at his speech at Mar-a-Lago.
The only public appearance Melania Trump has made was at a Mar-a-Lago Easter lunch with the former president, and Benanti’s Melania was quick to joke about that heavily criticized meal.
“It is so good to get away to get away from Washington and get back to normal life spending time with my family, enjoying roped off brunches in my live-in golf prison and disposing of top secret documents,” Benanti’s Melania told Colbert before taking a bite out of one of those aforementioned documents. “You can really taste the national security.”
Benanti’s Melania also told Colbert that she was actually present for Trump’s post-arrest speech but claimed she was in the bathroom the whole time. “What? If he can spend half an hour spewing crap then so can I,” she quipped.
Throughout the segment, the actor repeatedly gagged over the word “husband” and blew a party blower while discussing Trump’s arrest. When Colbert asked where she would go if her husband went to jail, she fully dropped the supportive wife act. “I go to Vegas, baby,” she said.
Benanti has been a recurring guest on “The Late Show With Stephen Colbert” since 2016. She quickly became a fan-favorite for her Melania Trump impression. Prior to this ongoing segment, the actor was best known for her Broadway career. She has received five Tony Award nominations, winning the Tony in 2008 for “Gypsy.” Benanti has also starred in “The Sound of Music Live!,” “Supergirl” and “The Detour.”
Watch the full parody segment from Monday’s “Late Show” in the video above.