“Please don’t make me do this again, it is really, really hard,”
Colbert said of his day in the fields. “Most soil is at ground level.
If we can put a man on the moon, how come we can’t
make the earth waist-high. Come on, where is the funding?!”
Comedian Stephen Colbert played it straight in testimony he prepared for a House subcommittee Friday – then immediately strayed from his script for laughs.
“This is America,” the Comedy Central host told the House Judiciary Committee’s subcommittee on immigration. “I don’t want a tomato picked by a Mexican. I want it picked by an American, sliced by a Guatemalan, and then served by a Brazilian.”
“I understand many Democrats may be looking for work come November,” he continued.
In his prepared testimony, the Comedy Central host said that he’d become interested in farmworker issues after the president of the United Farm Workers appeared on his show, and he spent a day in the fields.
“Joined by Congresswoman Zoe Lofgren — longtime advocate for farmworkers’ rights — I traveled to upstate New York where I spent 10 hours picking beans, packing corn and learning about the stark reality facing American Farms and farmers,” the Comedy Central host was to say in his opening statement before the immigration subcommittee of the House Judiciary Committee. “I learned that many farms are closing, growers are planting less or switching to other crops, and the production of fresh foods and vegetables is moving abroad.”
"They say that you truly know a man after you’ve walked a mile in his shoes, and while I have nowhere near the hardships of these struggling immigrants, I have been granted a sliver of insight,” he said in prepared remarks.
Before Colbert could speak, Rep. John Conyers (D-Mich.) praised “The Colbert Report” — and then asked whether the comedian would be willing to submit his testimony in writing and leave the hearing without speaking.
Some in the room gasped. Colbert muttered into the mic, “No hablo Ingles,” before straightening up and asking Lofgren, the subcommittee chairwoman, if she prefered that he leave the room. She did not.
Conyers subsequently withdrew his request, and Colbert began speaking — quickly moving past his somber prepared remarks in favor of the sort of comedy featured on his show.
“Please don’t make me do this again, it is really, really hard,” Colbert said of his day in the fields. “Most soil is at ground level. If we can put a man on the moon, how come we can’t make the earth waist-high. Come on, where is the funding?!” Politico