Here’s a superlative that Donald Trump may not embrace: he’s the top target of late-night comedians by a huge margin. He has drawn more jokes than the rest of the GOP field combined.
The figures come from a study from the Center for Media and Public Affairs at George Mason University. The organization tracks late-night humor.
“Donald Trump is the gift that keeps on giving to TV comedians,” said Robert Lichter, the center’s director and GMU communications professor. “They may not vote for him, but they will be sorry to see him go.”
The study covered opening monologues from Sept. 1 to Oct. 31 on “The Late Show With Stephen Colbert,” “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon,” “Jimmy Kimmel Live” and “The Daily Show With Trevor Noah.”
Trump was the target of 308 jokes; that’s compared to 282 jokes for the rest of the GOP field combined.
In second place was Hillary Clinton with 107 jokes, nearly twice as many as her opponent Bernie Sanders, with 58.
Republicans were targeted twice as often as Democrats, 590 jokes to 230 jokes.
Who told the most jokes about the candidates? Surprisingly, it was Fallon, with 264, followed closely by Colbert with 249. Noah didn’t start hosting until Sept. 28, and told 113 jokes.
Trump’s influence was perhaps reflected in other ways. The study showed that only 9% of the jokes concerned policies or proposals. Instead, 71% concerned personality or personal traits.
An example is this joke from Colbert: “Trump has trouble with evangelical Christians. People who read the Bible just don’t want to follow someone who looks that much like a golden calf.”
Or this, from Fallon: “Trump hinted he might consider Chris Christie to be on his ticket. Not to be his VP, but to be his wall between America and Mexico.”
The center said it will track late-night humor throughout the campaign.