Jon Stewart has accused the media of unfairly ignoring GOP presidential hopeful Ron Paul – and now the host of "The Daily Show” is putting his airtime where his mouth is. The inevitable meet-up is occurring: Stewart will host Rep. Paul on his Monday show.
What’s Stewart going to ask him? We think a couple of questions are dead locks. First, Stewart’s mentioned several times Paul’s contention that a border fence with Mexico might be used to keep Americans in, as well as illegal immigrants out. Don’t be surprised if Stewart tries to figure out what the heck Paul means by that. We can hear it already: “So congressman, you’re saying that US workers might flee south for jobs in the booming Latin American lawn care sector?”
Second, health care’s likely to come up. That’s because during the CNN/Tea Party GOP debate on Sept. 12, Wolf Blitzer asked Paul whether a critically ill young person without health insurance should just go untreated, and several audience members shouted out “yes.” Paul’s own response seemed to emphasize charities, but he didn’t really complete the thought. Maybe Stewart will ask him to explain.
It’s a subject the duo have talked about before. Paul has appeared at least twice previously on Stewart’s show, in 2009 and 2007. In the ’07 interview Stewart pointed out that Paul, a medical doctor, does not accept Medicare in his own practice.
“Would you get rid of it?” asked Stewart, referring to the popular government health-care program for seniors.
“Yes,” said Paul at the time. “But that’s not high on my agenda.”
A third subject that might get discussed is this: Which is more dangerous, big government or big corporations? In Paul’s past two appearances, Stewart has asked some thoughtful questions about whether the Texan’s libertarian principles might shrink government so much it can’t serve as a counterweight against corporate abuses. Paul has given some thoughtful answers about the role of government in a free society. They’ve engaged in the sort of debate of ideas that’s as rare as a bald anchorman on today’s “serious” political shows.
And at the end Stewart might try to give Paul some comedy pointers. He’s done that before. Paul’s 2007 appearance was in the middle of that campaign cycle’s debate season, and Stewart offered up what he described as zingers aimed at Paul’s competitors.
“Hey Rudy Giuliani,” said Stewart, of the oft-married, then-frontrunner ex-New York mayor. “If you love the war on terror so much why don’t you marry it ... oh right, you’d probably just divorce it a couple of years later.”
“I’ll have these on cards if you want them,” Stewart said while Ron Paul laughed.