Seven production members filming a comedy segment for CBS’ The Late Show With Stephen Colbert inside the US Capitol building were arrested on Thursday night, police said Friday.
The production team of Triumph the Insult Comic Dog — a puppet voiced by comedian and former Saturday Night Live writer Robert Smigel — were at the Capitol on Wednesday and Thursday to record interviews with members of Congress for their segment, CBS said in a statement to BuzzFeed News.
The interviews were authorized and pre-arranged through the members’ aides, the statement said. Smigel has been covering the ongoing public hearings by the House committee investigating the Jan. 6 insurrection.
“After leaving the members’ offices on their last interview of the day, the production team stayed to film stand-ups and other final comedy elements in the halls when they were detained by Capitol Police,” CBS said.
Neither CBS nor the police identified the production members who were arrested.
Conservatives were quick to draw ridiculous comparisons of the Colbert crew members’ arrests to the violent pro-Trump mob that stormed the Capitol last year.
“Last night, producers from Stephen Colbert’s show on CBS committed insurrection at the United States Capitol,” Fox News’ Tucker Carlson said on his show on Friday. “It’s exactly like what happened on Jan 6., so we’ll take a close look at what the punishments are,” he claimed.
Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene also described the comedy crew’s actions as an “insurrection” and “targeted harassment.”
Many Republicans have consistently downplayed the dangerous and violent actions of the Jan. 6 rioters attempting to stop Joe Biden from becoming certified as president.
Rep. Barry Loudermilk, who has come under scrutiny for leading a tour group whose members took photos of staircases and tunnel entrances inside the Capitol a day before the attack, also commented on the arrests.
“So while they’re accusing me of giving illegal tours of the Capitol, they are giving illegal tours of the Capitol,” Loudermilk told Fox News on Saturday, accusing Rep. Adam Schiff of bringing the comedy crew into the Capitol. “Who’s going to hold them accountable?” he said.