Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Jon Stewart Mocks Democrats on Keystone "Pipe Friction"

Jon Stewart

Despite the heated criticism against "The Daily Show" comic-host Jon Stewart, the sometime entertaining jester mocks Democrats, too.

In the following clip, Stewart skewered the Democrats' talking points for and against the project. This montage aired weeks before the end of the 113th Congress, when Republicans had won eight US Senate seats that year. In a last ditch effort to save Mary Landrieu (D-LA) who faced a runoff, she pleaded with her colleagues to pass Keystone, and prove to her constituents that she still had pull and influence in the upper chamber.

US Senator Mary Landrieu (D-LA) pleads with colleagues to pass Keystone
Stewart mocked the diametrically opposed arguments of Senators Landrieu and Boxer. The desperate senators argued that the project would expand from thousands of temporary to millions of permanent jobs. Boxer of California countered with an analysis assured only 38 permanent jobs.

US Senator Barbara Boxer (D-CA) opposes Keystone

The right number must fall somewhere in the middle.

For Stewart, the height of mockery was that the Democratic Party ran from their principles, and the President, then caved to pass legislation which they have blocked for years just to save one Senate seat which would not alter the balance of power.

Even when blasting the Democratic Party's lack of principle, Stewart exposes that the party's principles are lacking on every level. The majority of Americans supports Keystone. The majority of newspapers and labor groups also support this project.

While Stewarts is sticking to his progressive views, he shames the Democrats for abandoning theirs on the Keystone project. Inadvertently, the Daily Show host exposes the growing rift among Democrats on a number of issues, including the environment as well as the balance in favor of job growth vs. environmental protections.

The stark divisions over the benefits or the costs of this project prove once again that politics has taken precedence over policy and procedure. The Democrats had blasted Republicans for putting ideology ahead of innovation, but in the final vote on Keystone, which failed as did Landrieu's desperate reelection bid one week later, the Democrats on both sides of the debate showed their own ideological determination. Ignoring the interests of the American people, but even throwing one of their own off the ship, the US Senate liberal caucus helped kill Keystone.

The most entertaining part about all of it, though, is that Democrats were vividly divided on the issue, and one of their chief media cheerleaders, Jon Stewart, was joining the jibes.

Good times. Good times.

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