President Donald Trump’s joke about a washed-up yacht during a visit to Hurricane Florence-ravaged New Bern two weeks ago is being immortalized in a book by late-night host Stephen Colbert, with the proceeds going to help hurricane victims in North and South Carolina.
During his trip to the Carolinas on Sept. 19, Trump visited New Bern, where he helped distribute packages of hot dogs, peas and applesauce, and then visited some neighborhoods flooded by the Neuse River. This is where, according to press pool reports, Trump asked a man about a large yacht that had washed up against his house.
“Is this your boat?” Trump asked. When the man said it was not his boat, Trump replied, “At least you got a nice boat out of the deal.” Throughout the visit, Trump continued to make comments about the boat.
On “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert” the following night, Colbert called Trump’s comments about the boat “disturbingly inappropriate relative to this tragedy” and said the only way to make the remarks “palatable” was to make them into a children’s book. The result was “Whose Boat is This Boat? Comments That Don’t Help in the Aftermath of a Hurricane.” The book Colbert held up was an illustrated compilation of Trump’s quotes about that boat.
Colbert, a native of South Carolina, read the book aloud during his monologue finishing with, “The End. There is no moral.”
This past Friday, Colbert announced on the show that the joked-about book will actually be published and sold with all proceeds going to the Foundation for the Carolinas, the One SC Fund, the North Carolina Disaster Relief Fund, and the World Central Kitchen.
“You might recall that Donald Trump’s visit to North Carolina after the hurricane did not comfort everyone,” Colbert said. “He had an impassioned and truly heartfelt response to this one boat that washed ashore. He wouldn’t stop talking about it ... This way, Donald Trump’s comments about that boat are helping. In spite of him.”
As of Oct. 2, 50 people have died across three states as a result of the storm, according to state officials.
The book isn’t yet available to purchase — it drops Nov. 6 — but presale orders have made it the No. 1 selling book on Amazon. The book is being published by Simon & Schuster, a division of CBS.