Life without Trump as president can feel, sometimes, like a brand new world, but John Oliver would like you to remember that much of the former president’s legacy is still in effect - in major ways.
In a segment for Oliver’s HBO show Last Week with John Oliver, the comedian reminded viewers of one of Donald Trump’s most lasting impact: a parade of Republican candidates who know they can win by being as outlandish as possible.
The show first showed an ad in which Charles Peruto Jr, says: “I understand Black people just about as well as a Black person.”
Peruto, who’ll face Larry Krasner in a highly watched race for Philadelphia’s District Attorney, is white, but the ad, and the candidate, and receiving high praise from Republicans who are desperate to combat Krasner’s progressive policies with, it seems, anyone else.
Oliver then focused on Andrew Giuliani’s newly announced bid for governor of New York, which is being widely compared to a movie starring Will Ferrell, and attorney Mark McGlosky, who chose to run for Senate in Missouri after a photo of him and his wife pointing a gun at Black Lives Matter supporters was met with widespread horror and ridicule.
“All these candidates are ridiculous,” Oliver said. “But if the last few years has taught us anything, it’s that ridiculous people can end up getting elected.”
Speaking in the wake of Georgia Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene’s stake out of AOC’s office, which later opened up a history of the Republican’s longstanding obsession with the New York congresswoman, Oliver reminded viewers that there’s no room to take such candidates purely as a joke.
“These people look like clowns,” he continued on the show. “They are clowns. But it’s important to remember that clowns, while funny, are also fucking terrifying. And this week gave us another reminder that if you are not very careful you can wind up with a clown car full of them making incredibly important decisions about your life.”
Peruto’s campaign website features a lengthy section entitled “The Girl in My Bathtub,” in which the candidate gives a first person account about how a woman he was dating in 2013 ended up dead in his bathtub.
“The long story short is that I was not her only boyfriend, but it was my apartment where she expired,” the candidate writes, before explaining why he also got mad online at the prosecutor, ‘a bitter enemy,’ who attempted to convict him of a crime. “If it was another boyfriend’s apartment, you would have never heard of the case.”
8,926 Republicans in Philadelphia still voted for Peruto in an uncontested primary, so Oliver might be onto something.