Watch: Colbert Gets Bill O'Reilly to Cave in and Admit Gun Reforms Are Necessary
Fox News' Bill O’Reilly appeared on "The Late Show with Stephen Colbert" to discuss what problems caused the massacre in an Orlando, Florida, gay club early Sunday morning by 29-year-old Omar Mateen and what solutions could be assessed.
After Colbert's somber and earnest opening statement, he and O'Reilly disagreed on the main reason behind this and similar tragedies. O'Reilly pushed hard on the fear button and blamed Islamic terrorism (while admitting the violence is extreme and not central to the religion), while Colbert said access to guns is a far greater concern. In a rare moment of agreement between the two, both said that Congress would be right to put limits on access to the most deadly weapons, such as semi-automatic weapons.
But after the first break, O'Reilly reiterated the fear-based terrorism motive, saying that Congress should start "all-out war on the Islamic State," even though he admits this won’t stop a lone gunman who was born in the United States such as Omar Mateen.
Colbert then asked, if O'Reilly agrees that declaring war against the Islamic State would not prevent tragedies like Orlando from recurring, why do it?
“Because then, rather than outsourcing the fight against ISIS to the Kurds, NATO would do it, and NATO would then destroy command and control of ISIS and al-Qaeda.” O'Reilly told Colbert.
According to O'Reilly, "right now, guys like Mateen think ISIS is winning" due to extremist propaganda, largely online.
"They’re on the internet and ISIS is telling them they’re winning. ... Once the world sees that these people are being annihilated ... that ... propaganda vanishes," the Fox News host explained.
“When is the war over?” Colbert asked.
“The war is over when the level of terrorism goes down, the refugees can return home and you have a basic handle on the situation," O'Reilly proposed.
Sounds simple, right?
As for political use of the tragedy, the two appeared to agree on its unsavoriness, while O'Reilly stopped short of chastising Donald Trump for his “I appreciate the congrats for being right” about the threat of Islamic terrorism tweet.
"He wants to be president; he’s using this terrorism issue to bolster his popularity," said O'Reilly.
"So he's making a political tool out of a terror attack," Colbert said before asking if Hillary Clinton would sink to that level.
"Trump is betting that the country now wants a real avenger [while] Mrs. Clinton is very tied into the Obama legacy right now because she needs him to campaign," O'Reilly claimed.