If Jon Stewart was the fair and balanced jester the media made him out to be he would have sunk his teeth into the latest Hillary Clinton headlines Wednesday night.
He’s not, of course. He’s a highly partisan comic who routinely protects Democrats and “destroys” Republicans.
Wednesday’s “Daily Show” segment on Clinton’s email scandal should be preserved as a textbook example of Stewart in action.
Did he address the issue? Yes. Did he bring up some of the criticisms of the former First Lady and presumptive Democratic candidate for the presidency? Sure.
Did he minimize the scandal, leave out key, damning details and entirely avoid context that makes the issue so much bigger than he suggests?
Absolutely. That’s how Stewart always works depending on the target in question.
What Stewart did for Clinton is attempt to minimize a scandal even the biased press has been covering with alacrity. So how did he do it?
- Complete lack of outrage: Stewart didn’t drop curses over Clinton’s behavior. He treated it in a whimsical fashion. Had Fox News mispronounced an ambassador’s name the F-bombs would have flowed like a waterfall.
- Lack of context: Does Hillary have a history of hiding information? Is her record squeaky clean? Does the Clinton family’s past actions suggest any ties to her recent behavior? Stewart didn’t mention that the Associated Press may sue over government stonewalling regarding her tenure as Secretary of State after waiting five years for some of the information in question. Stewart acted as if she was the new kid on the block, a fresh-faced candidate without a track record to inspect.
- Missing emails, missing information: Stewart showed no concern, only tittering, over the fact that Clinton essentially could share the emails that didn’t harm her but keep the others that might. Does the word “Benghazi” ring a bell? How about the fact that we just learned Clinton’s team knew the Benghazi attack was terrorism from the first few moments? The email system’s lack of security also could have been calamitous if a foreign country hacked into it. None of that proved a concern for this truth-telling comic.
- Timing: Did Stewart mention Clinton registered her homebrew email account the day her Senate confirmation hearings started? No.
- Transparency: Remember when we applauded a presidential candidate who promised the most transparent administration ever? That proved to be one large lie. Now, Stewart doesn’t seem perturbed that a presidential contender will start her campaign with a potentially criminal opaque act.
Stewart wrapped by saying the scandal won’t impact her presidential campaign a wit. Why else would he address the subject in the fashion he did? It’s about keeping her presidential hopes alive and kicking, not speaking truth to power.
There’s the real Jon Stewart we’re told we’ll miss when he leaves “The Daily Show” later this year.