Stephen Colbert Calls Out Chris Wallace On Immigration Lie During ‘The Late Show’ Interview

Stephen Colbert and Fox News host Chris Wallace went head to head in a heated discussion about Donald Trump stoking fear with his base over the caravan of thousands of migrants headed towards the U.S. border.

The Late Show host asked Wallace—who became the recipient of the Freedom of Speech Award from the Media Institute prior to the interview—why he wouldn’t want to challenge Donald Trump’s lies as a journalist.

Wallace admitted that Trump inciting fear with the caravan was not good, “but the idea that three, or five, or seven thousand people from another country can just walk up to our border, knock on the door, and say, ‘We want in! We want to take jobs here, we want to work here’—no!”

He then advocated for the necessity of a border to protect the country. 

“A country does need to have borders, and there does need to be some kind of system that determines whether people are allowed in the country or not. Seriously, do you believe in open borders?”

But Colbert was quick to point out the fallacy in Wallace’s statement.

“No, we don’t have an open border!” the Late Show host exclaimed.

“There is a system, and three to five thousand people will not make it here. This has happened many times before, and they never do, and you know that.”

“And you know that there is a system in place, and there is a legal system, and we have laws that allow asylum. So I believe in the law. Do you believe in the law, Chris Wallace?”

“Uh, yeah, sure, I believe in the law,” Wallace replied, but he was not finished.

The discussion intensified with controlled tension when Wallace proceeded to list ‘facts’ about the protocol for attaining asylum.

“They are put out into the country, we don’t have enough places to put them, so we do have a catch-and-release program, and about 10 percent of the people that are caught and released return for their hearings. And only about 10 percent get legitimate asylum.”

Colbert wasn’t buying it and asked an off-camera staff member to fact-check his guest.

“I’m not sure that that’s true. Those aren’t the facts that I’ve seen. We’ve got a long interview. By the time this is over we’ll know whether you’re right, OK?”

Fearing he may be proven wrong, Wallace nervously retracted his statement and clarified by saying:

“Only 10 percent of the people who seek asylum are granted asylum.”

An incredulous Colbert countered:

“Well, that’s different than what you said.”

Wallace emphasized again that the majority of those seeking asylum do not show up.

“If a majority show up for their hearing, how wrong would you be?” Colbert challenged.

The shifty journalist replied, “I would be about 40 percent wrong.”

It turns out Wallace was way off.

Watch the full interview here.

People called out Wallace for his lies on social media.

Towards the end of the interview, a PolitiFact fact check revealed that 60 percent to 70 percent of non-detained immigrants attended the immigration-court proceedings.

Viewers could see right through the Fox reporter’s erroneous statement.

Colbert was lauded for calling out his guest during the program.

The clash in perspectives, however, never turned hostile.

Their discussion may have gotten heated, but both maintained their cool and that made for a very riveting debate unfolding before the audience.

H/T – DailyBeast, Salon, Twitter, Toofab