The Daily Show's Jon Stewart apparently feels that the long-running TV series known as the Democratic presidential primaries has jumped the shark. He announced on Thursday, "At this point, usually we go to our campaign coverage. But tonight we're not going to, and I'll tell you why. I'M FUCKING SICK OF IT!"
"But did you know there's another candidate in the race?" Stewart went on. "One who's a -- Republican? ... His name's McCain, John McCain, and on Sunday he met head-to-head with the tiny inquisitor, George Stephanopoulos."
Stewart reminded viewers of the last Democratic debate, where Stephanopoulos said to Barack Obama, "Do you think Reverend Wright loves America as much as you do?"
"Do you know McCain has sought and gotten the endorsement of his own crazy reverend guy?" Stewart asked, playing clips of Reverend John Hagee linking the Catholic Church to Hitler, calling Americans Muslims disloyal, and saying that New Orleans was destroyed because it offended God.
"Hagee's god doesn't damn America," Stewart explained. "Hagee's god just destroys the parts of it he doesn't like."
Then, addressing McCain, he asked, "How you going to distance yourself from that, Senator?"
But when Stephanopoulos asked McCain about Hagee, McCain affirmed that "I'm glad to have his endorsement."
"That's not an option!" yelled a visibly outraged Stewart. "You gotta backpedal!"
Stewart next brought up the Democratic debate question about Obama not wearing a flag pin and showed that McCain didn't have one either in his appearance with Stephanopoulos. "You're not wearing a flag on your lapel pin, McCain," Stewart noted insinuatingly. "How you going to answer that question?"
But McCain just smiled sweetly. "Oh, that's right," conceded Stewart. "He was never asked that question."
Stewart then turned to McCain's opinions on the great issues of the campaign. On Iraq, McCain insisted, "It's not a matter of time, it's a matter of casualties. If we can eliminate American casualties, that's a key to the success."
"You know," suggested Stewart, 'if we leave, our casualties go down considerably."
On the economy, McCain claimed, "There's hundreds of billions that can be saved, and Americans know that." When Stephanopoulos asked if this meant he couldn't fulfill his earlier promise to balance the budget in his first term, McCain snapped right back, "No, of course not. Look, I'll find you a hundred billion tomorrow."
Stewart finally pointed out that McCain "is the only national candidate we have whose adorability allows him to head to Selma, Alabama, one of the symbolic birthplaces of the civil rights movement, and address a crowd of almost exclusively white middle class people -- and get this response from the media."
CNN's Wolf Blitzer described that visit as "John McCain tries to bridge the gap with African American voters."
"He went near where black people live!" Stewart enthused. "Clearly the sweet talk express is unstoppable."
This video is from Comedy Central's The Daily Show, broadcast April 24, 2008.