Speed Reads

2016 Watch

Jon Stewart ardently tries to get Hillary Clinton to declare her presidential run, kind of succeeds

At the beginning of Tuesday night's Daily Show, Jon Stewart states (almost) unequivocally that his guest, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, is declaring her candidacy for president in 2016 on his show. (Spoiler: She doesn't.) But Clinton all but agrees with Stewart when he declares her candidacy for her, even knowingly answering all the right questions on his career aptitude test. If Clinton's candidacy is supposed to be a long tease, maybe we're approaching the denouement.

Clinton laughs a lot in the interview, and it's clearly a friendly audience, but Stewart actually asks some interesting, tough questions. He also playfully tells her that nobody cares about her book, Tough Choices, and calls her out when she darts around his barbs. In fact, for somebody supposed to be a "terrible politician," she fields the questions and turns around the criticism pretty skillfully.

Clinton's answers on how to solve the federal government are boilerplate, but her thoughts on how to sell America to the world are pretty interesting. Since the end of the Cold War, "we have not been telling our story very well," she said. "We are not perfect by any means, but we have a great story about human freedom, human rights, human opportunity, and let's get back to telling it — to ourselves, first and foremost, and believing it about ourselves, and then taking that around the world."

You can watch Stewart's extended interview with Clinton at the Daily Show website (Part 3, Part 4), in which the two talk mostly about the Israel-Palestinian conflict. --Peter Weber