Jon Stewart and Fox News anchor go head to head
June 19th, 2011
03:54 PM ET
11 years ago

Jon Stewart and Fox News anchor go head to head

(CNN) – Comedian Jon Stewart sparred with Fox News anchor Chris Wallace over media bias Sunday and argued that "the bias of the mainstream media is toward sensationalism, conflict and laziness," instead of a liberal agenda.

When challenged on how he develops his stinging – and persistent – satiric critiques of Fox, Stewart joked, "It's actually quite easy when you feel it. You got to feel it in your soul, you know?"

But Stewart stood up for his "Daily Show" antics.

"Here is the difference between you and I," he said, "I'm a comedian first. My comedy is informed by an ideological background, there's no question about that.

"The thing that - in some respect - conservative activists will never understand is … I'm not an activist. I'm a comedian," Stewart said.

He argued that his own influence is drawn only from the public's own letdown in the media.

"The embarrassment is that I'm given credibility in this world because of the disappointment that the public has in what the news media does," he asserted.

"There's no question that I don't tell the full story.

"But I don't not tell the full story based on a purely ideological partisan agenda," Stewart continued.

The comedian also showcased his serious side, admitting that he voted for George H.W. Bush because "there was an integrity about him that I respected greatly," and revealing his disappointment in President Barack Obama because, "I thought he understood the corrosiveness of the system that existed, and I thought he was going to do more to blow the system up."

And he denied his own ambition to be a "political player," saying instead, "Do I want my voice heard? Absolutely. That's why I got into comedy."

Filed under: Fox News • Jon Stewart
soundoff (112 Responses)
  1. Josh

    Jon Stewarts show is not intended to be factually accurate.... or funny

    June 21, 2011 11:27 am at 11:27 am |
  2. Nic

    I think Chris Wallace had Jon Stewart on for fun!
    Hello he's just a comic.....

    June 21, 2011 11:28 am at 11:28 am |
  3. Anonymous

    Hey anonymous,

    So Obama stated his agenda was to bankrupt and destroy the country. I believe he wanted to give those without a "piece of the pie", to experience some "Americana" let's be real that's what the other side doesn't like, they enjoy the "social caste system" but are the first ones to spout off about how this president is a "socialist" and how they worked so hard to get where they are, maybe, or maybe they had an advantage that others didn't have. I'm not an endorser of the Dems or Reps, but really they are acting like kids who don't know how to share. "Shame on all of them".

    June 21, 2011 11:32 am at 11:32 am |
  4. Digialpha

    Jon is a hypocrite and is not paying attention. Obama did shake up the "system", he is the first president to actually push for and achieve health care reform. I wonder if Jon's Obama bashing has its roots in the presidents support to allow the Bush tax cuts to expire? Jon qualifies for the Bush tax cuts and no doubt has saved LOTS of money because of the cuts. Jon does not speak for Democrats; he speaks for himself.

    June 21, 2011 11:36 am at 11:36 am |
  5. Just Jim

    Folks, it makes no sense to post anti-Fox and anti-conservative messages on this forum. Nor does it work to go after Republicans here.

    Conservatives don't read.

    June 21, 2011 11:36 am at 11:36 am |
  6. Tulsa

    RS, CA
    LOL, sounds like you are talking about FOX "news", not The Daily Show.
    What's the matter, can't handle TRUTH?

    June 21, 2011 11:36 am at 11:36 am |
  7. Carol

    @anonymous – If you had a neighbor whose agenda was to bankrupt and destroy your neighborhood by his actions, would you not want him to fail?

    If you truly believe that someone, of any party, had an agenda to bankrupt and destroy this country personally, then you are truly ignorant. What would anyone get as a reward to ruin their own country for themselves and their children? Just because someone else disagrees with you on how to solve a problem doesn't make them some kind of evil person out to destroy the world. If you want to use that theory though, then fine, then that means GWB killed the victims of Katrina and destroyed the country's economy. That's just as ridiculous.

    June 21, 2011 11:40 am at 11:40 am |
  8. skarphace

    In my opinion, not all political commentators on Fox News are partisan nut jobs. Unfortunately, those who are get the best ratings because attack politics is what their vewer's like to hear. This is precisely why commentators such as Limbaugh and Beck are so popular. It is all about ratings.

    June 21, 2011 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
  9. John

    Claudia, Houston, Tx

    "Never forget Republicans said "we want this President to fail", they meant it and that's treason."

    First off it was Rush Limbaugh who said he wanted the President to fail. The man is a conservative talk show host not a party leader. Saying you want the President to fail is free speech, not treason. It was free speech when the liberals said it about Bush and it's free speech when a conservative says it about Obama. Sorry to burst your perfect little bubble but there are two sides to every story. Maybe you should pull stop worrying about toeing the party line and brush up some facts.

    June 21, 2011 12:12 pm at 12:12 pm |
  10. Deb

    Conservs and Fox whine and yell about constitutional rights (i.e guns and free speech) well John is using his right to free speech, if they don't like it don't listen PERIOD

    June 21, 2011 12:13 pm at 12:13 pm |
  11. Josh Roberts

    It's funny everyone taking shots at fox news for being biased. Don't you think everyone knows this including the people who watch and are working there? I love watching the daily show and the Colbert Report but I know that they're comedians and that they're from the left. It's fine though! We should feel lucky that we can have far right and far left news orginizations that can chop the news into different directions instead of just having a state run news agency. I'm a right leaning independant and I like watching fox, I also like going onto Al Jazeeras site, Der Spiegel, BBC, CNN and the rest of them. No matter which one you go to they will have their own opinion about everything. Fianl note is Chris Wallace is a democrat. I didn't watch the interview but even if it seems like he was attacking John there is no doubt that Stewart can handle himself.

    June 21, 2011 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  12. jude

    Stewart's only telling he truth about Faux News. Good for him! Rupert Murdoch's Lying Circus is truly lying about being "news" and is just an arm of the Republican Party.

    June 21, 2011 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
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