Last week, Politico reported that President Obama had summoned “Daily Show” host Jon Stewart to the White House twice during his presidency, for what the magazine called “secret meetings.” Fox News quickly jumped on the report and allegations of collusion between America’s president and most prominent satirist flooded social media.
All that attention finally forced Stewart to confess the not-so-lurid details of his “secret meetings” with Obama on Wednesday night’s show.
“It wasn’t really that big a deal,” Stewart said. “I was brought through the secret White House tunnel entrance through Mount Rushmore. It was a round table meeting with the President, Elvis – still alive – Minister Farrakhan and the Alien 51 alien.”
After a few more jokes involving a “Saul Alinsky prayer” and Reagan’s skeleton, Stewart attempted to set the record straight.
As some Fox News reporters had themselves admitted, the meetings weren’t so much secret as unreported – before both visits, Stewart signed his name into the publicly available White House logs. According to Stewart, his private discussions with Obama were essentially the same as his public interviews with the president, except that at the White House he was fed “truly the best salmon you’ve ever had.”
“We spent about five to seven minutes with Obama kind of scolding me not turn young Americans cynical and I spent about five to seven minutes explaining to him that I’m skeptically idealistic,” Stewart said.
The soon to-be-departing “Daily Show” host then confessed that, over the years, he’s taken meetings with “many influential and powerful individuals – and Billy Joel.” But the only “secret meeting” he ever took, was with Fox News president Roger Ailes in 2010.
According to Stewart, Ailes called the meeting for the same reason all the others did: He wanted to look Stewart in the eye and ask, “Jon, why are you such an a-hole?”