Many on Twitter are bashing Emmys producers for allowing Sean Spicer to appear onstage alongside Stephen Colbert, where President Donald Trump's former White House press secretary cracked a joke about the crowd size at Sunday night's show

By Tierney McAfee
September 18, 2017 11:40 AM
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Not everyone was laughing over former White House press secretary Sean Spicer‘s ostensibly comic cameo at the 2017 Emmys.

Many on Twitter are bashing Emmys producers for allowing Spicer to appear onstage alongside Stephen Colbert, where President Donald Trump‘s former spokesman cracked a joke about the crowd size at Sunday night’s show, saying, “This will be the largest audience to witness an Emmys, period, both in person and around the world.”

Colbert, the Late Show host who, according to CNNMoney, was the brains behind the cameo, said he and his producers knew there would be blowback—and they were right.

69th Primetime Emmy Awards - Backstage, Los Angeles, USA - 17 Sep 2017
Credit: Invision/AP/Shutterstock

Critics on social media, including several reporters and White House correspondents, said it was “disgraceful” to give Spicer a platform after he “lied to the American people” from his West Wing lectern in the White House press briefing room. And a Washington Post headline pleaded: “Please don’t normalize him.”

69th Annual Primetime Emmy Awards - Show
Credit: Kevin Winter/Getty Images

Aaron Blake, a senior political reporter for Washington Post‘s “The Fix,” tweeted: “Sorry to be a spoilsport, but I don’t think it’s funny that Spicer is tacitly admitting to his falsehoods and using it for image rehab.”

Added CNN White House correspondent Kaitlin Collins: “Is it supposed to be comical that the former White House spokesman is now tacitly admitting that he lied to the American people?”

Some of the backlash was directed at Colbert specifically, with critics ranging from “disappointed” to “utterly confused.” Colbert’s ratings have been lifted since Trump’s inauguration in January, in large part by Colbert’s sharp criticism of Trump and his administration.

The Mindy Project writer David Stassen tweeted: “Sean Spicer was the first Trump official post-inauguration to lie to the American people & treat our free press as the enemy. F–k. Him.”

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Not everyone was protesting Spicer’s appearance. Celebrities including James Corden, LL Cool J, Dolly Parton and Colbert seemed happy to pose for photos backstage with Trump’s former press secretary.

As for Spicer himself, he seemed to think his cameo went well. He told Entertainment Weekly after the show that “everyone has been very gracious,” even though “it’s not exactly a Republican crowd.”