On Friday’s “The O’Reilly Factor” on the Fox News Channel, host Bill O’Reilly sparred with Comedy Central “The Daily Show” anchor Jon Stewart over the results of the midterm elections earlier this month.
Stewart downplayed President Barack Obama’s role in Democratic Party politics, arguing he wasn’t the leader of the party nor was he well received by fellow Democrats.
Partial transcript as follows:
O’REILLY: All right. Now, why did they get their butts kicked?
STEWART: I really feel like this is early Thanksgiving. I’m preparing now. Why did they get their butts kicked?
STEWART: Because they curled up in a little ball and try to make sure that nobody hit them too. I have no idea what they even ran on.
O’REILLY: The Democrats?
STEWART: Right. They ran on —
O’REILLY: But they always ran on.
STEWART: They always ran on. We don’t like Obama either. I don’t know who voted for him. We have got nothing to do with the guy.
O’REILLY: And why did they do that?
STEWART: Because they are frightened.
STEWART: Not having principle.
O’REILLY: No, they are frightened of his low poll numbers because most Americans don’t think is he doing a good job.
STEWART: His poll numbers are so much higher than the Congressional poll numbers. He is at 40 percent, Congress is at what, 9 percent? Head lice better than Congress.
O’REILLY: Yes, that’s like saying, Sierra Leone is better than the Congo. I mean, come on! They are all in bad trouble. And the President is the leader, OK?
STEWART: OK, all right.
O’REILLY: Do you know why the Democrats lost?
STEWART: I don’t believe he is the leader of the Democratic Party. I honestly believe —
O’REILLY: You don’t? You know is he president though, Barack Obama.
STEWART: I believe he has a bit of disdain for the Democrats. I believe they have a bit of disdain for him.
O’REILLY: I’m not going to argue with that.
STEWART: He’s not like the Clinton machine that truly was —
O’REILLY: That’s true. He is an outsider. He is not an insider.
STEWART: Right. I don’t believe that there is a compliment.
O’REILLY: Here is why the Democrats lost.
O’REILLY: Because the callow youth that watches your program didn’t show up.
STEWART: Yes. Yes. Yes. Then why did ask you me, if you knew you could have just shorten the whole conversation. You could have said here’s why rather than make me say something.
O’REILLY: It’s my job, all right, to make you look good. And I thought mistakenly that you might have some actual —
STEWART: So you believe —
O’REILLY: — good opinion on this.
STEWART: In your twisted, adult mind that you would ask me that question and I would say it’s the callow youth that watch my show are the problem.
O’REILLY: Yes. That didn’t show up. All right? They didn’t show up. Do you know why? Because marijuana is now legal in so many states, all right? That they can’t leave the house. There is no incentive for them to go anywhere anymore. That’s why they lost. Immigration, executive order. You are for that, right?
STEWART: You want to know if I’m for it, necessarily. I do believe though, you know, in terms of this idea that he is a tyrant. You know, we have a system in place. If he oversteps the authority of his office doing executive order, then that will be addressed through the proper proceedings. That being said, the fundamental problem solving mechanism of our government is utterly broken. And we can all blame it on the president. But let’s face facts. When he came into office. When he was at his inauguration, the Republicans met in a restaurant and said, we will deny this man any bipartisan agreement. We will undercut anything that he offers to the detriment of the country but the short-term gain of our party. And that is how they have operated over the past six years. I believe it was a steak house. Let’s not call it a steak house. Let’s call it a sizzler.
O’REILLY: But you and your 17 writers are aware that in the first two years —
O’REILLY: The Congress was controlled by the Democrats —
O’REILLY: They could passed. They could have passed it.
STEWART: Well, they work forward through that healthcare option.
O’REILLY: They couldn’t do both? They couldn’t do two things?
STEWART: Have seen them work? It’s been six years since they have done anything. What have they done in the last two years? They have done nothing.
O’REILLY: He didn’t really do anything for two years when he had the chance to do it on immigration.
STEWART: If you go back and you look, there was a large legislative agenda. The problem was, within the Senate you have this super majority rules and you can’t get anything through. And the Republicans filibuster. Now, that’s not in any way exonerating the Democrats for behavior. But, let’s — if we’re going to have the conversation, let’s lay the facts out. The Republicans have had it so good because here is what they say. We don’t put our fingerprints on anything. We don’t do anything. We don’t own anything. And we allow ourselves to win by attrition.
O’REILLY: OK, there’s no doubt the Republicans are not looked upon favorably by the voters.
STEWART: And have done nothing.
O’REILLY: But I will tell you one thing.
STEWART: Because you know why? Because the callow Republican, pot smoking.
O’REILLY: No wait.
STEWART: I’m sorry. I went into a different thing.
O’REILLY: Here is why.
STEWART: Yes, yes.
O’REILLY: OK, here’s why?
O’REILLY: You basically cannot allow President Obama to keep people in this country who are undocumented. You can’t allow them unless we know if any of them watch your program. OK? Because if any of them do, they must be deported immediately. All right?
STEWART: I understand.
O’REILLY: So, that’s all I’m asking.
STEWART: No, I understand.
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