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Stephen Colbert reveals ‘secret words’ Donald Trump used in Ukraine phone call

WATCH: Stephen Colbert went over the notes which The White House released from U.S. President Donald Trump's call with Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky, suggesting that Trump pressured the fellow leader to smear Joe Biden in exchange for military aid.

A current onslaught of backlash surrounding U.S. President Donald Trump is proving to be a goldmine for Stephen Colbert and his Late Show audience this week.

After the U.S. House of Representatives launched a formal impeachment inquiry against Trump, 73, on Tuesday, the much-beloved TV show and his guests celebrated with a 40-second standing ovation that same evening.

The following night, Colbert, 55, continued the mockery by poking fun at Trump about the recently leaked and highly controversial phone call he had with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy.

The White House released a transcript of the call on Wednesday following a whistleblower’s complaint about the conversation.

(L-R) Donald Trump and Stephen Colbert.
(L-R) Donald Trump and Stephen Colbert. CP Images Archive / The Late Show / YouTube

Trump was accused of pressuring Zelenskiy to help investigate 2020 Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden and his family while at the same time withholding millions in military aid to Ukraine.

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The transcript revealed exactly what Colbert later referred to as the “secret words” Trump used to persuade the Eastern European leader.

READ MORE: Stephen Colbert audience gives 40-second ovation for Trump impeachment inquiry

Colbert first joked and highlighted the fact that in the midst of their discussion, Trump had reminded Zelenskiy of how much his country was in debt with the U.S.

“The United States has been very very good to Ukraine. I wouldn’t say that it’s reciprocal necessarily…,” said Trump during the call.

Colbert later quipped that Trump did not know the meaning of the world “reciprocal.”

WATCH: White House memo confirms Trump pushed for info on Biden

White House memo confirms Trump pushed for info on Biden
White House memo confirms Trump pushed for info on Biden

Furthermore, Zelenskiy, 41, said that he’d like to buy more military defence weapons from the United States. Trump, however, replied by asking for a favour instead — the favour, of course, being collusion against Biden, 76.

In the call, Trump said: “I would like you to do us a favour, though, because our country has been through a lot, and Ukraine knows a lot about it.”

READ MORE: Explainer: how the process of impeaching a U.S. president works

Colbert jumped back in at “I would like you to do us a favour, though,” with a microphone in hand. He treated the conversation like a TV game show and Trump as its contestant, revealing that was the “secret” phrase.

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“Ladies and gentlemen, our contestant has said today’s secret word,” said Colbert. “It’s the phrase that pays. The Ukrainian exchange. For political favours. Tell the president what he’s won…”

President Donald Trump meets with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy at the InterContinental Barclay New York hotel during the United Nations General Assembly, Wednesday, Sept. 25, 2019, in New York.
President Donald Trump meets with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy at the InterContinental Barclay New York hotel during the United Nations General Assembly, Wednesday, Sept. 25, 2019, in New York. AP Photo/Evan Vucci

He continued: “It’s protracted impeachment inquiries, a permanent stain on his already stained legacy, and a lovely Broyhill dinette set – Broyhill, eat crow in style.”

The Late Show audience erupted into laughter and applause at Colbert’s monologue.

READ MORE: Trump’s call with Ukraine — Read the memo provided by the White House

The Late Show wrote on Twitter: “If you thought Trump was smart enough to not voluntarily release evidence of his crimes, then you thought wrong.”

— With files from Global News Staff and the Associated Press

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adam.wallis@globalnews.ca