jon stewart debate reaction

Comedy Central/Paramount

‘This cannot be real life’: Jon Stewart’s live reaction to Presidential debate hits the nail on the head

The returning host did not hold back on what we all witnessed Thursday night.


Mike Hadge

Pop Culture

So, did you watch last night’s Presidential debate? If so, how did it make you feel, America? Great? Terrified? Surprisingly young? Well, we know how it made Jon Stewart feel. 

Following CNN’s first presidential debate between (BIGGEST SIGH I AM ABLE TO MUSTER) President Joe Biden and Donald Trump, Jon Stewart’s Daily Show held a live response episode, breaking the recent schedule of Stewart hosting the show only on Monday nights. As he is wont to do, Stewart did not hold back on what he thought of the two men’s performance and for that matter, the state of the country. 

The general consensus of last night’s debate was that Biden seemed old and sick (he had a cold, apparently) and a typically unhinged Trump lied a lot without being fact checked in any way by moderators Jake Tapper and Dana Bash. (Shout out to all those post-nine month abortions we’re all having!) Stewart was impressed with neither performance. 

“This cannot be real life,” Stewart uttered.

“Let me just say after watching tonight’s debate: both of these men should be using performance-enhancing drugs,” Stewart said in response to the theory that both elder candidates would be chemically enhanced for the debate. “If performance-enhancing drugs will improve their lucidity, their ability to solve problems and, in one of the candidate’s cases, improve their truthfulness, morality and malignant narcissism, then suppository away.”

Mostly, Stewart let the debate set up the jokes for him, with an uncomfortable audience reacting to the very fresh, very cringe debate clips. 

Stewart also took special time to rag on CNN’s month-long promo campaign for the debate, as well as the low bars set for both candidate’s performances. However, it was Biden’s performance which took the brunt of Stewart’s ire. 

“A lot of people have resting 25th Amendment face,” Stewart joked regarding Biden’s overly low energy performance. “While Biden was preparing at Camp David—for a week!—did anyone mention he would also be on camera?” Yeah. Just yeah. 

The reaction comes months after Stewart drew some backlash for his first appearance back on The Daily Show, in which he criticized Joe Biden’s age and viability as a Democratic candidate and last bastion of defense against a second, likely disastrous Trump term. However, may say last night’s debate proved some validity to his initial concerns. 

It doesn’t end here for Stewart’s Daily Show, as the long-running Comedy Central series is set to go live after the next presidential debate on Sept. 10. The production will also do a full week of shows from both the Democratic and Republican National Conventions later this summer. We’ve got a ways to go here, folks. Strap in. 

Check out the complete segment here: 

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