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CNN LARRY KING LIVE

Jon Stewart and the Issues

Aired June 19, 2001 - 21:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
LARRY KING, HOST: Tonight: More Americans get their news from "The Daily Show" than from any other show that from any with a couch! Jon Stewart, the fake anchor who rips into real headlines, is here for the hour taking your calls. Jon Stewart next on LARRY KING LIVE!

First, we want to congratulate our buddy, Jon Stewart. He won the only Peabody Award for election coverage given last year. It was given to Jon Stewart's show. And as a Peabody winner ourselves, you're watching two Peabody winners tonight, folks. Be in awe.

Actor, comic, best-selling author, on the cover of latest edition of "Esquire," dealing with 10 men who have inspired us all. Stewart makes the cover. He's the, of course, anchor of "The Daily Show," and it's always good to see you.

JON STEWART, "THE DAILY SHOW": Nice to see you as well. Thanks for having me again.

KING: Thank you for being here with us, Jon. Let's run down news items and get Stewart's thoughts.

STEWART: Before we start, though, can I ask a question? Was Michael Flatley here last night?

KING: No, it was on tape, but he taped -- why?

STEWART: Well, there's a lot of scuff marks.

(LAUGHTER)

STEWART: I thought maybe he was...

KING: Do you like that kind of dancing? It's quick.

STEWART: I like -- any time the lord of -- I was known in high school, the duchess of the dance.

(LAUGHTER)

STEWART: So, to see the lord, he is in fact -- we worshiped him.

KING: In awe of him. OK.

STEWART: We were in awe of him. KING: Bill and Hillary were together this past weekend at Chelsea's graduation.

STEWART: You know, they're married. That's from what I understand.

KING: What do you make of that whole thing? Hillary's a senator. Bill...

STEWART: Their family?

KING: Yeah.

STEWART: I make it like...

KING: Bill spoke in San Francisco...

STEWART: They have a lot of problems many families have, when one is a senator and the other is paid -- let's say, half a million, to speak in Australia. Spending time together is very difficult.

(LAUGHTER)

KING: That's a common thing among families.

STEWART: I remember when I graduated, the media coverage then was also just insane. It was -- I remember they kept saying, Donald and Marion Liebowitz, what do you make of that? Yeah, a lot of the shows were talking about it.

KING: Your parents were there?

STEWART: My parents, I believe, were there. First time they had seen each other, as a matter of fact, in a long amount of time.

KING: What high school -- what college did you graduate?

STEWART: I went to -- it was called, back then, of course, DeVry Technical Institute. Mostly HV-AC repair.

(LAUGHTER)

STEWART: No, it was the College of William & Mary, in Williamsburg, Virginia.

KING: You went to William & Mary?

STEWART: What, are you kidding me?

KING: That's a good school.

STEWART: It's almost a Yeshiva.

KING: What did you major in?

STEWART: I'm not sure. KING: OK.

STEWART: It was -- it started out as chemistry. I believe it ended up as psychology.

KING: You're not sure what you majored in?

STEWART: You leave, you don't look at the paper. Do you look at the paper?

KING: No, I didn't go to college. OK, OK.

All right, how did Bush do in Europe?

STEWART: Wow! Wow, did he knock them dead! First of all, when he came back, the first thing he's going to get is one of them fancy drinking fountains that he found in the bathroom in Europe. You know what I'm talking about.

(LAUGHTER)

STEWART: I think he had a good time. I think he liked it better than the Europe at Epcot center.

(LAUGHTER)

STEWART: I think the expectation was that he was going to go over there and blow up the world, and obviously he didn't do that. I like my presidents to have a little more travel experience than, say, your average college senior. So...

KING: But he did well.

STEWART: No! He did terribly! He did well. I don't know.

KING: What do you mean? Did he do terribly...

STEWART: Here's what I think happened. First of all, he united -- he is a uniter, not a divider.

KING: Correct.

STEWART: And he did unite them. I've never seen them so angry at us.

(LAUGHTER)

KING: He united them all.

STEWART: That is a continent that can't decide on a currency. They can't decide on standards for meat. The only thing they know is they can't stand us anymore. He got Sweden angry. There were protesters in Sweden. It's a country that -- their day consists of what, volleyball and sex? How do you get Sweden angry? Sweden. When he hears "Swedish outrage," have you ever heard that? No. Swedish massage. KING: That's right.

STEWART: They were mad at us.

STEWART: Bush and Putin.

KING: This is what he said, "I looked a man in the eye...

STEWART: Don't you think "Bush and Putin" sounds like an old fable? I want to tell you a story about Bush and Putin.

(LAUGHTER)

KING: A Russian actor.

STEWART: A Russian actor, Bush and Putin. Yeah.

KING: Bush said, "I looked the man in the eye, I found him to be very straightforward and trustworthy." Putin is a former, of course, KGB operative and ex-head of domestic intelligence, and he's been on this show.

STEWART: And he's smaller than Mickey Rooney. How do you look that guy in the eye?

KING: Yeah, how do you look him the eye?

STEWART: Putin is tiny, and with the golden baby hair -- he's got that fine -- you know, that little babies, you know, like your kid probably has.

KING: Yeah.

STEWART: Same thing. I bet he's got that same, like, that baby smell. Doesn't he -- looks like a baby. And he's -- from what I understand, 8 inches tall, and that it's all mirrors. Bush looked him in the eye and he trusts him. And that's good enough for me. You know, language barrier, ballistic missile treaty -- doesn't matter. He looked him in the eye, Larry.

KING: And he trusts him.

STEWART: And he trusts him.

STEWART: That's what counts.

STEWART: KGB guys are notoriously open and honest.

(LAUGHTER)

STEWART: Why wouldn't you trust him? He's got no history of mistrust. He's got no reason not to trust.

KING: Sometimes you could look someone right in eye and tell.

STEWART: When? has that ever happened? Ever? KING: Especially among politicians.

STEWART: Right. He looked him in the eye, and now he knows.

KING: But he held his ground, Bush, he's going to build that -- what do you make of that missile thing he's going to, we're going to build, if we build it?

STEWART: I think it's -- listen.

KING: A shield.

STEWART: If it worked for Luke Skywalker, I think it can work for us. He really did a number on the Death Star. I think it's -- the difficulty of the missile shield is that it shows a difference in ingenuity in terms of the Bush policies. For instance, defense. We're going to build an elaborate labyrinth of satellites, and they will detect a missile, but can determine that it's different from any other rocket-based -- and then they will contact the other satellites and a laser particle beam will knock it down. That's the defense.

KING: Right.

STEWART: The energy policy is -- well, we could dig a hole in Alaska and see what's there. So there's a little bit of a difference in -- the one is very, you know, imagineering, and it's going to take some time and the other -- dig a hole.

KING: More with Jon Stewart. We'll be including your phone calls on this edition of LARRY KING LIVE. Tomorrow night: a trip through the Nixon library and birthplace with...

STEWART: Oooh.

KING: It's some show. We taped...

STEWART: That is. Do you know what, the Nixon library never went with the Dewey Decimal System. That's the kind of man Nixon was. He has his own numbering systems.

KING: We'll be back.

STEWART: Children's fiction? You wouldn't be able to find it.

(LAUGHTER)

KING: We'll be back with Jon Stewart. Don't go away.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP, "THE DAILY SHOW WITH JON STEWART")

STEWART: Bush also defended his policies here at home.

GEORGE W. BUSH, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Democracies debate issues. Democracies represent the will of the people. The death penalty is the will of people in the United States.

(LAUGHTER)

STEWART: If A equals B, then B equals C.

(LAUGHTER)

STEWART: Let me see if I get this right. You're saying that if a majority of the people in this country vote for something -- or someone...

(LAUGHTER)

(END VIDEO CLIP)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP, "THE LATE SHOW WITH DAVID LETTERMAN")

DAVID LETTERMAN, HOST: How many of you remember the good old days when we had President Clinton?

(APPLAUSE)

LETTERMAN: Monica...

(APPLAUSE)

LETTERMAN: Good news for President Clinton: he's joined the YMCA here in New York City. Former President Clinton joined the YMCA. One day, you are the most powerful man in the world, the next day you are waiting for the fat guy to get off the treadmill. It's just the whole....

(END VIDEO CLIP)

KING: We are with Jon Stewart. That was funny. What do you make about this Clinton -- Bill Clinton...

STEWART: I feel bad for Clinton.

KING: Why?

STEWART: Well, the man had this tremendous -- it's sort of like a -- you know, like at college, there are dudes that graduate, but then they decide, like, I'm just going work at that bar and like hang out, and then, weeks turn into months turn into years, and they are like 33 but still hanging around with, like, the freshmen discussion group. And that's what it is going to be for him.

He's going -- he is past his time. Like, the "Beverly Hills 90210" series, they all looked like they were 40 but they were still trying to play it, like, yeah, we are in high school, we're hanging out.

KING: You think he's just going to be...

STEWART: He's going to be a creepy guy hanging around. Like, he's got -- like -- you will be sitting at some dinner sometime, and he will come by, like: "Larry -- did you see 'Ally McBeal' last week? That is a funny show," and you will be like: "I'm eating." You know what I mean? Like, he is going to be annoying.

KING: What do you make...

STEWART: He's lonely!

KING: Did you read the "Vanity Fair" story about Clinton-Gore?

STEWART: Did I? I don't go a day without reading "Vanity Fair."

KING: What did you make of that, Clinton-Gore don't like each other?

STEWART: I can't believe they didn't get along. I can't believe that a vice president who spent eight years doing his bidding and biting his tongue wouldn't be mad at a guy who blew it all because he wanted oral sex. I can't believe that would cause tension amongst the two of them!

How -- I can't believe they held it together as long as they did. If Gore wasn't such a -- sort of a suck-it-up kind of guy, such a first-born type personality, that thing would have exploded, believe me, years ago on the campaign trail. That thing would have exploded.

KING: What was the -- you won the Peabody. What was election like for you?

STEWART: Election night for me?

KING: Yeah.

STEWART: It was a magical night, Larry.

KING: You loved it.

STEWART: No, we wrote it all -- I mean, we are a comedy show, we are not a real news show.

KING: I know, but you must have...

STEWART: So we wrote -- we had to write it all a week before, so you can imagine we did it like a flow chart: if Bush wins, this, if Gore wins, this. We didn't think: What if no one wins? Oh yeah, let's write that.

So we, you know, at the end of that night, we were like, we are out of jokes! We didn't think this would happen, so it was, you know, it was astonishing to us.

KING: Can you keep up the funny bit about Bush...

STEWART: No. You watch the show, you an see we can't keep up the funny part.

KING: No, no, I mean, Bush as, like, not bright. That is going to fade, isn't it?

STEWART: I hope not.

KING: You don't think it's going to fade?

STEWART: We don't really deal with the idea that Bush is not bright. I'm working off the idea that Bush is incredibly bright. Who would think that the kid who takes the little yellow bus to school is planning world domination? That's his thing. He plays...

KING: He plays this sort of...

STEWART: I'm just a poor little -- he plays that whole Texas twang, I'm just a regular guy -- whose father was president. He is -- George Bush -- it's affirmative action. He is a guy who has benefited from affirmative action. He's -- you think he could have gotten into Yale if it weren't for quotas? He is a legacy. You know what I'm saying. Do you know what I am saying? What am I saying?

KING: What do you make of the Rudy Giuliani story?

(CROSSTALK)

KING: I want to cover all the news with you.

STEWART: I'm looking at it clearly, (UNINTELLIGIBLE) done, an issue, done, you are just -- you're just going down the menu. Bring it -- bring it with me. What have we got next?

KING: Giuliani!

STEWART: Giuliani.

KING: What's going on?

STEWART: Oh, what a wonderful -- to see what's going on with him and his wife, it's like -- you ever watched the show "Cops"?

KING: Sure.

STEWART: It's just like a scene from "Cops," except he has got his shirt on. That's the only difference. She said -- she is a bitch, I don't trust her, shut up, you drunk!

(LAUGHTER)

STEWART: It's like -- it's like "Cops," and then the guy comes in: "Sir, stand in the corner."

"I love him!"

"Shut up, you don't love me!" It's awesome. It's great.

KING: How, though, did as smart a politician let this happen -- a house, the girlfriend, you know what I mean? The whole thing, it's... STEWART: They all do -- here's what they all think: "If I keep the trains running, nobody is going to care." And then at the end -- this is all coming out because it is the end -- at the end, he doesn't have...

KING: This never would have happened three years ago.

STEWART: ... the reach. No. You don't think this was going on three years ago? What do you think, he lost his nut, like, six months ago, he went bonkers?

(LAUGHTER)

STEWART: No. But he had the power then. It's the end of the don, you know.

KING: Like Clinton with pardons. You go a little whack.

STEWART: Like Clinton with pardons -- like, that's the worst thing he did. You know what I mean? It's -- the reach is gone, the influence. So...

KING: That must be tough...

STEWART: Yeah, I really feel bad for them.

(LAUGHTER)

(CROSSTALK)

STEWART: ... you know what, I'm not doing jokes about them anymore.

KING: Yeah.

STEWART: I don't -- I think that it's a very interesting phenomenon, and it must be very lonely to be at the end of your power cycle and watch people swim away. That must be a very strange feeling.

KING: You are not kidding.

STEWART: No, I'm not.

KING: Weird.

STEWART: Yeah. I remember I had the same thing...

KING: When?

STEWART: ... what happened, when I was leaving MTV.

(LAUGHTER)

KING: We'll be back with more...

STEWART: Notice I got no check on that one.

KING: ... the brilliant Jon Stewart. I'm just -- I listed some things they said.

STEWART: I understand, I understand. When I score, you check it off. When I don't score, I see what's going on, here. You know, Flatley -- what is he -- he gets in trouble, boom, boom, step, right, kick, boom, he is out. Me, I got to -- you know.

KING: Oh, the insecurity of the comic. Shoot him now, folks. Do a shot. OK. We'll be back with Jon Stewart as Putin following these words.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP, "THE DAILY SHOW")

STEWART: The change in leadership in the Senate is perhaps best exemplified, however, by the change in the president pro tem of Senate, from Strom Thurmond of South Carolina to West Virginia Senator Robert Byrd. It's a -- it's a pretty big change. I mean, first off, Thurmond is an ancient 98 years old, clearly out of touch, while Byrd is a hip 83.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP, "LATE NIGHT WITH CONAN O'BRIEN")

CONAN O'BRIEN, HOST: True story. The other day, while playing golf in England, President Clinton happened upon a couple getting married, and he posed for pictures with the bride and groom. Isn't that sweet? He posed with them, yeah. And not only that, the former president offered to help consummate the marriage!

(END VIDEO CLIP)

KING: All political humor occurs late night on television, right?

STEWART: I believe that's true. Actually, all our political humor occurs during the day, we just talk about it later on.

KING: Speaking of that, what's your read those -- that funny bit you did on McCain -- on Thurmond and Byrd.

STEWART: Change in the Senate.

KING: The power shift.

STEWART: Earth-shaking, shattering. You should see the Senate -- it's so different than it was. You know, the blinds now -- you remember they had levelers?

KING: Yeah.

STEWART: Now it's wood slots. They changed the whole thing around. I don't know. Do you know what the Senate does normally?

KING: Well, the committee chairman has a lot of power. Now it's Democratic committee chairmen, so they can bring things to the floor that don't come to the floor.

STEWART: Right.

KING: There you go.

STEWART: Just the whole idea, it went from 50-50 with the tie- breaker being Cheney, to 50 to 49. I mean, one guy. Yeah, I don't see how, you know, everybody treated it like it was the Russian revolution -- "The Bolsheviks, my God! They have stormed the palace!"

KING: It's over!

STEWART: Yeah it's -- the whole system is so out of touch with regular America that they really do think this is a big deal. A Republican became an independent! I got to vacate my window office! You know what I mean? It's like -- it doesn't -- who cares? They make this whole big thing.

I love the phrase "we have to get back to doing the people's business." What do you guys, run a deli out of there? What business were you doing? What, do you have a lemonade stand? You are a senator! "The American people want us to get back to their business." No, we don't -- we're cleaning our gutters, we don't give a crap what you do.

I don't -- the whole Senate, it goes by archaic, parliamentary rules, that our whole system needs an enema, needs to be cleared out of detrimus (ph) and rubbish that has accrued there over the past 200 years. It's a wonderful system, and what we do wouldn't work if it wasn't a wonderful system, because people wouldn't think it's funny.

If this were Czechoslovakia in '68 and I was up there with the "Daily Show," hey! Our government! Cha-cha-cha! People would be like, my brother is dead, not funny.

So, I mean it is a luxury that we get to do that, but they need to clean, you know, they need to clean house.

KING: John McCain, though. What do you make of him? The maverick.

STEWART: What do I make -- you ever watch Sellers in "Strangelove"?

KING: Yeah.

STEWART: That's McCain. I think he is going to go. I think the cork is going to pop, and he is going to be sitting at the table one day going, (UNINTELLIGIBLE)! (UNINTELLIGIBLE)!

(LAUGHTER)

STEWART: You know, it's going to be a "Strangelove." He's going to pop. Because the guy -- I mean, he endured what -- eight years...

KING: Eight years.

STEWART: ...in the bamboo thing. He comes out to play for the country a patriot, and Bushy, who is doing what? He is doing time in a Texas disco during the war. Yeah, I'm going to learn how to fly planes man. Is that good pot?

You know what I mean? He's hanging out, having a good time. McCain is over there, drinking his own urine, and then you come back here and Bush paints him like he is a -- a freak. And he sweeps away McCain. That has got to -- believe me, you have seen "Deer Hunter," right?

KING: Yeah.

STEWART: You don't think that is sticking in his head? You don't think he is sitting at a table right now with a bandana around his face spinning, ha-ha-ha-ha!

(LAUGHTER)

KING: We'll be right back with Jon Stewart.

STEWART: I can't get in trouble for this, can I?

KING: No. What are they going to do to you?

STEWART: Line 3.

KING: We'll be right back with Jon Stewart. Stay there.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP, "THE DAILY SHOW")

STEWART: Just two weeks ago, Columbia got in trouble for manufacturing a fake movie critic, and now they have been caught manufacturing fake audience members. Begging the question, what's next? A fake news show? Fake scorn on them?

(END VIDEO CLIP)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP, "THE TONIGHT SHOW WITH JAY LENO")

JAY LENO: Last week the Senate passed a bill to overhaul our nation's school system, and President Bush is expected to sign it. Interesting bill. This new system is designed to prevent marginal kids from slipping through the cracks, and you know, going on to possibly become president of the United States.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

KING: Doesn't go away, does it? You guys never let up, do you?

STEWART: No, well, it is -- you know, we have to go on every night, I mean.

KING: I know. You've got to be funny.

STEWART: Oh, no. No, clearly you haven't seen our show. No, we don't.

KING: OK.

STEWART: We just have to have clips to show on other shows. The actual show is not funny.

KING: 2004, they are talking about it already. In fact, Birch Bayh (sic) announced he is not running.

STEWART: I thought Birch -- I thought that was a good move. Elm Bayh I think should run. Who is Birch Bayh? What kind of name is that? That is the name of a soda. That's...

KING: His father was a senator.

STEWART: Evan.

KING: Evan.

STEWART: Evan was good.

KING: Evan announced he is not running.

STEWART: I actually announced as well I'm not running. You should announce. You should get on that bandwagon, Larry.

KING: Right now, get on that bandwagon, I'm not running.

STEWART: You are the show though, where people come on and go, "I'm running." They show up here all the time.

KING: Do you want to say something tonight?

STEWART: Crazy people, yes. I'm running as Ross Perot.

KING: You're going to assume...

STEWART: Wouldn't it be great to run for president? That -- I think that would actually be kind of a neat -- you get to travel...

KING: What kind of candidate would you be?

STEWART: Terrible.

KING: Let's pretend you were announcing tonight.

STEWART: Seriously?

KING: Why do you want to be president, Jon?

STEWART: You know I can't act, right? I don't -- why do I want to be president? Because I got nothing. I don't think I would be a good president. I'd actually -- I'm announcing I'm dropping out. I didn't think you were going with that premise.

KING: You mean you don't want...

STEWART: I'm dropping out of the presidency right now tonight. On tonight's show. I just announced, and now I'm out. Would you be a good president?

KING: No.

STEWART: No, you wouldn't? I wouldn't either. I wouldn't want to do it. Who would want to do that? You can't be yourself. Look what's happening in this administration.

There, I mean, you saw their energy and conservation environmental policy. A nightmare, it is -- let's dig in the Arctic reserves, let's do this. Where did he unveil it? In front of the Sequoias at the Redwood National Forest, like we are going to be fooled, like, oh, no, it will be good for the environment. He wouldn't say all these terrible things in front of trees. He wouldn't do that to them.

He wanted to do a good photo-op for what this environmental policy is, he should have announced it on the shores of the Bering Straits covered in oil. That's what he should have done. He should have flopped around like an otter in oil, and say: I think this is going to be a good environmental policy.

KING: You think this administration then of the oil companies, you think this is...

STEWART: No, I think the electric companies have something to say about it. I think there are other business interests there as well. This is -- I'm actually nervous, it is somewhat of an Orwellian, I believe in this administration. In that, I think their policy is if we say it enough, you can't argue with us.

We are compassionate. Gee, it doesn't really seem that way, but -- we are compassionate. Doesn't really seem -- are you saying we are not compassionate? We are compassionate. Sort of a carpet bombing approach.

KING: More with Jon Stewart. Tomorrow night...

STEWART: No, I'm out of here.

KING: We'll be back with somebody, right after this.

STEWART: "The Lord Of The Dance"!

KING: Don't go away.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP, "LATE NIGHT WITH CONAN O'BRIEN") CONAN O'BRIEN, HOST: President Bush is in Europe, and there are a lot of protests. A lot of people are protesting him in Europe. True story: yesterday he was in Sweden. Two hundred protesters exposed their bare bottoms to President Bush. They pulled down their pants. That really happened. It really happened, yeah. Yes, and after hearing about it, President Clinton said wow, when I was president I had to pay to see 200 Swedish (AUDIO GAP). I had to -- that was -- he was bitter.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

KING: We are back with Jon Stewart. We are going to be including your phone calls, but first here -- how has Jon Stewart's fame spread? Watch an edition, a portion of an edition of "Sex and the City" on HBO. Watch.

STEWART: What?

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP "SEX AND THE CITY")

UNIDENTIFIED ACTRESS: Just because she was on strike didn't mean she had to do without. That is how Miranda discovered the perfect relationship -- Jon Stewart and chocolate eclairs.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

KING: You are the answer to her prayers.

STEWART: That's crazy.

KING: In her loneliness she looks to you, didn't know that?

STEWART: I don't get cable -- no, I'm just kidding.

KING: You knew about that, didn't you?

STEWART: No, I didn't know about that. I'm not allowed to watch shows with dirty words.

KING: Your wife won't let you watch shows like that?

STEWART: I should ask her. No, I...

KING: You just -- it's a rule for yourself.

STEWART: When you live in the basement...

(CROSSTALK)

STEWART: No. I have a question for "Ask CNN," because I saw that thing you just did -- ask CNN, why is there a C-SPAN and a C-SPAN 2?

I understand C-SPAN -- you want to find out what's going on in committee. What's C-SPAN 2 -- is that for a subcommittee? What is that? why is C-SPAN 2. KING: One's the House, one's the Senate.

STEWART: No one watches C-SPAN, so really two should fold. It's not like ESPN, ESPN 2, where you have like, you know.

KING: There's no reason for 2?

STEWART: That is what I'm saying.

KING: What about if they come up with...

STEWART: Here's the problem with news expansion. I's just like baseball. Just like Tampa Bay shouldn't have a team, Fox shouldn't have a team.

KING: I see. Too much news?

STEWART: Thank you. Too many networks. You don't have the talent to fill the pool.

KING: There's not enough talent.

STEWART: That's what I'm saying. You've got guys that should be minor league news readers up there, throwing soft balls at people. That's why so many politicians goes deep. That's what I'm saying.

KING: Good way to look at it. Let's take a call. Calgary, Alberta, Canada, for Mr. Stewart. Hello.

STEWART: First of all, are you a spy?

CALLER: Hi, Larry. I just wanted to ask Jon what he thinks the chances are of Hillary getting elected...

STEWART: I don't need to tell you. You are not an American.

KING: She has been elected. You mean president?

CALLER: No, I mean elected as president one day, and if he thinks that she would be good at the job if she did get the job?

KING: Hillary.

STEWART: First of all, thank you for calling. Calgary is Canada.

KING: Yes.

STEWART: And I just want her to know that we will not be attacking you. We want peace with your country. We want the tension to end between Canada and ourselves. We want the border to be safeguarded, and we believe in you. So I look into your eyes, and I trust you.

KING: So, Canadians can sleep well tonight?

STEWART: Tonight.

KING: Tonight.

STEWART: But don't get cocky.

KING: Hillary. Future. President, possible?

STEWART: No. She's too polarizing. She's like Madonna. You either love her or you hate her. But you can't have a president that is that -- you see what presidents are now, they are baby food. They come out with: I'm for -- education. I like children to be smart. Like the anti education lobby -- what? I demand that children are idiots -- you know, so it is Pablum.

She is way too polarizing a figure to ever do that. But I like her husband. I think this kid has a gleam in his eye, this Bill Clinton.

KING: You think he's got a future.

STEWART: I think we show up at his house two years from now naked with a box of cigars and go, "You know what, stick them wherever you want, just come back." We are sorry. We apologize. Run again. You know what would be great? If he runs as her -- gets the haircut, does the thing, puts on the blue pant suit -- yes, hello, I'm running for president. I went to (UNINTELLIGIBLE). Vote for me -- don't you think? And he could be president again.

KING: He has got that great flare.

STEWART: Man, I smell movie deal, like a "Tootsie" kind of a thing. KING: Yes.

STEWART: It's like "Dave" but with a skirt. Ooh, writer's guild strike don't even phase me.

KING: That's right. Who's the running mate?

STEWART: When you looked at the lord of the dance...

KING: What's with you and Flatley?

STEWART: ... does he seem regal? Dance-wise?

KING: You admire him.

STEWART: No, I'm boggled by any one who'd be the lord of anything -- honestly, other than flies.

KING: Anna Nicole Smith -- we're covering all the bases here -- they threw out a judgment of $474 million.

STEWART: You hate to see that happen to such a sweetie. I don't know how she got the judgment in the first place.

KING: Well, she was married to the man.

STEWART: For what -- a week. I mean that is not -- you can't get $400 million for putting in a week. I'm sorry. You got to put in some time with old Wrinkle-Bottom before you get $400 (sic).

KING: Sharon Stone gets her husband a gift of a Komodo Dragon.

STEWART: How much is he getting for that? She's a piece of work, am I right?

KING: She's a nice lady.

STEWART: Right. She is a piece of work.

KING: What do you mean a piece of work?

STEWART: She's a piece of work like the way you would say, "You see that lady over there? She is piece of work." You know what I mean? Don't you think she's probably a high maintenance lady? The guy got his foot bitten off by a Komodo Dragon. That didn't phase him. Imagine what his life is like at home.

I mean imagine if you lost your foot to a Komodo Dragon, and that wasn't the worst thing that happened to you that week. That is a tough lady to live with. Living with a Komodo Dragon for God sakes. The Komodo Dragon bit his foot and he's like "It's OK, can I stay overnight at the hospital? She is crazy. I'm just kidding. I'm sure she is very nice. I've never met her.

KING: She's very nice.

STEWART: Yes.

KING: She is. Trust me, she's nice!

STEWART: I believe you.

KING: OK. But it's a good routine you did. Nice work.

STEWART: Really? Thank you.

KING: When we come back we are going to ask Jon Stewart about reality TV and about a controversial new show from NBC. We will deal with people and real mayhem. Don't go away.

STEWART: Really?

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP "THE DAILY SHOW")

STEWART: But ultimately this is a group of hard-core fighting men. Not just satisfied with brand new berets. They also enjoy cake! Berets and cake! Remember this is an organization that discourages homosexuality.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP "LATE SHOW WITH DAVID LETTERMAN")

LETTERMAN: Saddam Hussein, all of a sudden the guy is really coming out of his shell. He's promoting his new TV series. As a matter of fact, this morning he was talking about on "Good Morning Baghdad" -- did you see him on -- Morning Baghdad!

(APPLAUSE)

LETTERMAN: That's the kind of material you have to do when the president is not having sex with interns!

(END VIDEO CLIP)

KING: Reality television. We already know "Survivor," now we've got "Fear Factor" coming to NBC. People will be put in pits with rats and worms, dragged by horses.

STEWART: Wow.

KING: And "Survivor 3" is going to Kenya.

STEWART: Can I tell something that's so weird? That is how I grew up -- rats and worms and -- yes. I'll let you read my diary sometime.

KING: What do you make of this wave of television of -- fear and mayhem?

STEWART: Yeah. That would be fun to watch. I mean, you know, people rubberneck. I got no problem with that. I mean, the only thing I have a problem with is "Survivor," they're doing it in Kenya. I don't know who -- I mean, who thinks of Kenya, you think, oh, embassy bombing, let's do a game show, that's a good place to do a show. Like, why do a show called "Survivor" in a land where that's actually an issue? I mean, that just seems crass. I mean, not as crass as these things may be, that's -- you have gone over the line.

KING: That's crassy crass.

STEWART: Now it feels like you're making fun of them. Like you're going to -- how you are you going to explain that to somebody who lives in Kenya? Yeah, it's two tribes and they don't have much food, and fighting each other, and at some point only one will be left.

KING: No kidding!

STEWART: Oh, you mean, like Tuesday. You mean Tuesday. That's not a game show, that's what we do here. We are the tops at that.

KING: Hello, Georgia, hello.

CALLER: Yes, Mr. Stewart, do you support the tax cuts of President Bush? KING: The tax cuts. They will save you money, you are in a big class.

STEWART: Sure, yeah, I like anything that's up on that. Now that I got into that rich thing -- yeah, anything that helps us. I like this trickle-down economics thing. Give the rich a lot of money, and then maybe 10, 20 years later, you know, poor people might see some of it. But hopefully by then, I will be out of the picture. Retired in a little spa.

I don't -- I don't understand it. Again, I think the tax system needs a...

KING: You're going to get a check for $600.

STEWART: OK, OK.

KING: Found money.

STEWART: Found money. That's great. That's great. That's two massages with release.

(LAUGHTER)

KING: That's funny. Thank you.

STEWART: Let me tell you this. I don't understand it. There is something about in 2006, if you are married for a week, you get another $100, but if you don't -- it's like -- you know, it's what they used to do to people on "Let's Make a Deal." "Do you have an egg in your purse?" "I do." "That's $100!" "I have an egg in my purse." "No, we're not doing that anymore!"

(CROSSTALK)

KING: $118,000...

(CROSSTALK)

STEWART: Well, that -- I mean, that's insane. I mean, what they did honestly is -- they should have done something very fair for middle class, you know, people that made a difference. The other thing is, you know, the rich people will stimulate the economy. Right. They will do it anyway, believe me. You know what I mean? It's the whole thing about that.

KING: How they get to be rich.

STEWART: Yeah, exactly. Like tax incentives. You should never get a tax incentive to build a stadium. If you've got enough money to build a stadium, I think you can handle the tax.

KING: Yeah, like what's a tax on your airplane.

STEWART: Yeah, exactly.

KING: If you got to ask, you don't...

STEWART: The luxury tax thing is -- you know.

KING: Toronto, hello.

STEWART: What's with Canada tonight?

CALLER: Hi.

KING: I don't know. They love you in Canada.

CALLER: Hi, Jon.

KING: Hi.

STEWART: Hi.

CALLER: We are wondering, if you could go back in history, what time would you like to go back to to satirize?

KING: To satirize -- yeah, supposing you could do your show in any time in history, when would be the best time?

STEWART: Oh, Dark Ages, no question. What hypocrisy! I like -- I like this time in history. I don't have an imagination. I don't like these questions. That is like a weird...

KING: Why?

STEWART: It's like a dinner party question, where people go: "And then, after I answer this, she is going to want to play charades." Like, I know how this works. She is -- it's one of those questions like: "If you could have a dinner party with Lincoln, and Carol Channing and Hitler, who would you sit next to?" I don't know. I'm not high, I can't answer.

KING: But the Dark Ages was funny.

STEWART: The Dark Ages is funny.

KING: How would you come on every night?

STEWART: Exactly.

KING: Dark.

STEWART: I like to start every show with "Hear ye! Hear ye!" Ring my bell, and put on my little hat.

KING: What do you make of fake endorsements of movies? Sony and...

STEWART: It's really....

KING: They invented a critic even. STEWART: I know. It's really affecting the credibility of movie blurbs. Now, when I look at something, and I say to myself: "Is it really the thrill ride of the summer?" I don't know anymore. It may not be one of the top 10 greatest romantic comedies in history, so says Paul Wonder of WPAI syndicated.

KING: Yes, have you noticed the names of some of these people?

STEWART: Jeannie Wolf, man. Hates nothing. Love to be married to Jeannie Wolf. "Hey, honey, guess where we are going tonight for dinner? The basement! We're going to eat dirt!"

"I love dirt! It is one of the top 10 meals of the summer!" She hates nothing. The woman is -- cannot be displeased.

KING: And WBI Radio, they like everything.

STEWART: She would be the one person -- remember the movie "Clockwork Orange"?

KING: Sure.

STEWART: She would be the one person watching the movie with her eyes pegged open going: "No, that's good. I don't mind it." Getting the drops put in her eyes. "It's one of the top 10 best eye-drying- out movies of the summer! Help me!" I love the fact that they show remorse, like you know, oh, yeah, we did invent a guy, I don't know that happened. That's crazy! I don't know how they got through!

(LAUGHTER)

STEWART: What were we thinking? Cut to them crumpling up memo about invented guy. Nothing's real, it's an illusion! I love it all. I think it's great.

KING: It's show business.

STEWART: It's complete -- yeah, it's all show business. I don't think anybody looks at that and thinks that's any sort of over the line.

KING: Would you like a career in movies, like Greg Kinnear and the like?

STEWART: Not like career! Oh, my God, that -- no, -- movies -- you have seen me act. I don't want a career like that, I want to be successful.

KING: You are putting down movies, you think that...

STEWART: For me. I can't -- you have to be able to act.

KING: You're not good?

STEWART: These guys like Kinnear, they can act.

KING: Yeah, he's good.

STEWART: They get Oscars and things.

KING: Yeah, you would be...

STEWART: Cannot act.

KING: Cannot act.

STEWART: Crucial part of the whole business. You've got be able to -- I did this thing, "Death to Smoochy" with Danny DeVito, he is a lovely, lovely man, but really had to be -- like, we'd do a scene, and every time we'd do a scene I would see him stand up and walk over toward Ryan. Every time I'd finish and he'd go: "You know you are supposed to be mad at him, right?"

And I go: "Well, yeah, I didn't seem mad?"

And he goes: "Well, you have to do something mad!"

KING: We'll be back with more of Jon Stewart, don't go away.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP, "THE DAILY SHOW")

STEWART: President Bush dedicated a national D-Day memorial in front of a crowd of 15,000. The crowd waited in polite anticipation of the president's remarks, while three F-16s screeched across the sky back toward Washington, apparently on their way to bring back the speech Bush had accidentally left in his other pants.

GEORGE W. BUSH, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We have seen our nations through World War and the Cold War. Our shared and -- our shared values and experiences must guide us now in our continued partnership.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

KING: Jon Stewart was one of "People" magazine's 50 most beautiful people in America in...

STEWART: Lou Dobbs! How is Lou Dobbs doing?

KING: Fine.

STEWART: I hear he's back.

KING: Where did you learn that?

STEWART: I don't know, there was a...

KING: Didn't get any promotion.

STEWART: There was a bit of a campaign, and so I watched Lou Dobbs one night. That whole stadium full of people chanting his name, he's saying the same crap everybody else -- yeah, you should buy the ones that are going up.

(LAUGHTER)

STEWART: You Lou Dobbs, you have the magic secret! What are those beans? I put them in a backyard and I get a beanstalk, is that it, Lou Dobbs? You are magic, Lou Dobbs! I feel like going to Lou Dobbs with my little bank book and just having Lou Dobbs just do this. I'm giving it a little bit of Lou Dobbs!

This whole thing. You know, this network is the digestive system of news. I realize that. Blitzer breaks the story, then "BURDEN OF PROOF" tells us what it means legally, and then "TALKBACK LIVE" tell us what unemployed people in Atlanta think about it. The whole thing -- it's like every story goes through the CNN digestive system until it finally comes out at, you know, the weather guy.

KING: And we are over here, sort of...

STEWART: And we are over here...

KING: ... looking at it all.

STEWART: Making what I call magic.

KING: Columbia, South Carolina, hello.

CALLER: How you doing?

KING: Fine.

CALLER: Jon, first of all, I have to tell you, I think you are one of the funniest and most brilliant, and definitely one of the sexiest men on television. And with that being said, I want to ask you, what the heck is with these crazy, insane gas prices? What the heck are we going to do? Oh, I love you, Jon. I love you.

STEWART: That was...

KING: What caused it? Why...

STEWART: I have -- that was my fault. You know...

KING: You are to blame for the $3 a gallon?

STEWART: When they say, don't fill it up and keep after it, cuts?

KING: Yeah.

STEWART: I do that. And a lot of that is spillage, and I apologize. Gee, I shouldn't have said that, should I? It's my fault. You are looking at me like I'm Kuwait. And I don't like the way you are looking at me.

KING: You let it go over?

STEWART: Can I tell you what happened? Oil is finite. And we...

KING: No kidding.

STEWART: ...used too much of it, and now it's going to cost us a lot of money until we run out of it. Then we're just going to do this -- yes, so it is our fault.

KING: But it will be your grandchildren, what the heck? Right? Won't be you.

STEWART: Thank you for giving me perspective on this, I appreciate that.

KING: What are you worried about?

STEWART: I'm not worried at all.

KING: That's right.

STEWART: As a matter of fact, I'm going to go home and take a nice hot bath in oil. I'm going to start using oil all the time for everything: brushing my teeth.

Not it -- you know what? Here is my new motto for gas: it's not just for cars anymore. I'm going to make daiquiris with it, I'm going to do everything with oil.

KING: Use it up!

(LAUGHTER)

STEWART: Oil, gas, why not?

KING: We'll be back with our remaining moments with Jon Stewart. Right after this.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP, "THE DAILY SHOW")

STEWART: The Supreme Court ruled yesterday that disabled golfer Casey Martin has the legal right to ride in a golf cart between shots at PGA Tour events. A challenge to the tour's rule requiring players to walk the course during tournaments, my God! The next thing you know, they are going to let some poor guy carry around his clubs for him. What's happened to golf?

(END VIDEO CLIP)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

KING: What are you doing?

STEWART: Does this tie make me look neurotic?

KING: Why?

STEWART: I was just curious. Does it make me look like a hypochondriac?

KING: Are you doing Letterman? You know, Letterman does things like that.

STEWART: Does he really?

KING: I was on Letterman one night, and we go to a break. And he goes, you like this tie? I says, yes it's nice. He says, I hate this tie.

STEWART: He tricked you.

KING: Why did I put this tie on?

STEWART: He sinks you in.

KING: Do you want to switch ties? He goes, they will notice. Nobody is normal in this business.

STEWART: No.

KING: Who is normal? Boy Scout banned on gays. What do you make of that?

STEWART: Who do they think they are kidding?

KING: Who do they think they are kidding?

STEWART: The Boy Scouts is already the gayest organization in America.

KING: What do you mean?

STEWART: The definition of gay isn't same sex intercourse, it is thousands of young boys eagerly awaiting next year's jamboree. What is gayer than thousands of young boys in neckerchiefs? Even the Village People won't wear that.

(LAUGHTER)

STEWART: I will dress like a sailor. I ain't putting that on.

KING: Dennis Tito paid to go to outer space. Would you?

STEWART: It depends on the rates at the time. What season did he go? In season? It depends on if -- did he get a window room?

KING: Did you admire that?

STEWART: No, I didn't admire that. He's a schmuck. $25 million could have fed how many people? This guy goes up in space to get a view you can already get from a camera they have up there. What do you need to go up there -- what is he, going to go up in space and go, all right, you are right, like, you can see the whole clouds, looks like a mishmash. Take me back.

KING: You have no desire to go to space.

STEWART: I have no desire to go to Ohio, forget about space. I don't like traveling. I like to stay at home.

KING: How long do you want to keep doing this wonderful show do you?

STEWART: What have you heard?

KING: Am I out? Is that what this is about?

KING: Let me get one quick call.

STEWART: Are you firing me on the air?

KING: Nashville, hello.

CALLER: What did you think of "The New York Times" piece on the rise of the political humor, particularly the study that indicated that more young people are getting their news from your show -- "The Daily Show," rather than traditional news sources?

KING: What did you make of that?

STEWART: I'm sorry, I'm listening to a ball game.

KING: It is 4-1 Mets in the 9th.

STEWART: Yes, more people get news from what?

KING: Your show -- more young people get their news from your show, than from the traditional newscast.

STEWART: Yes.

KING: What do you make of that?

STEWART: It is -- yes, they should. And we are now because of that putting in small mind control messages into our show to see if we can dominate young people.

KING: Young people. What are you going to do? Sell them Cheerios or what?

STEWART: No, it's not about salesmanship. It's about bringing back the Whig Party. We're bringing back the Whigs.

KING: Bring back the Whig Party.

STEWART: People that know me know that I'm a bleeding Martin Van Buren fan, and crazy for him, and I'm going to bring back the Whigs, this country will return to federalism.

KING: Jon, delight having you as always.

STEWART: Oh, and I'm -- I should go. KING: The hour is up. You don't have to go, you could sit here.

STEWART: Flatley going to be around?

KING: Lou Dobbs may come by.

STEWART: Lou Dobbs. You know what would really be a good idea, Jon? Invest your money in something that grows it.

KING: OK. We are out of time.

STEWART: Lou Dobbs!

KING: Lou Dobbs. OK, thanks for joining us.

STEWART: Thanks for having me.

KING: Stay tuned for CNN TONIGHT.

Tomorrow night, a tour of the Nixon Library. And Thursday night, an exclusive interview -- his first interview since all of this pardon mess, Roger Clinton.

(LAUGHTER)

STEWART: I thought you were going with the big dog. You are going with Roger?

KING: Roger Clinton tells his side of the story for the first time -- we'll be taking your phone calls, Thursday night. Thanks for joining us. Impressed?

STEWART: Thank you for having me.

KING: Thanks for joining us.

For Jon Stewart, I'm Larry King in New York! CNN TONIGHT is next. Good night.

TO ORDER A VIDEO OF THIS TRANSCRIPT, PLEASE CALL 800-CNN-NEWS OR USE OUR SECURE ONLINE ORDER FORM LOCATED AT www.fdch.com

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