“I worry about the hype. The only person more overhyped than me is you.” That’s what Sen. Barack Obama told Jon Stewart 10 years ago during their first Daily Show interview together. A decade and the better part of two consequential presidential terms later, President Obama gave his final Daily Show interview with Stewart, who is leaving the show next month. Stewart joked that the president, who has 18 months left in office, is also suffering from “senioritis.” But Obama seemed eager to use this final opportunity in front of one of his most passionate constituencies to burnish his legacy. He was most forceful and talked at most length in going after critics of his recently struck Iran nuclear deal, which faces a possible vote in Congress. Throughout the interview, Obama tried to portray critics of the deal as eager to be “reprising some of the same positions that we saw during the Iraq war” that led to that disastrous conflict. He implied that when critics of the deal—such as every major Republican candidate for president—are asked what they would do instead, the answers lead back to the mistakes of the past, referencing one of Stewart’s favorite boogeymen. “Typically, they’re vague and they fall back on ‘well, if you had beat your chest a little more—or if you had brought Dick Cheney to the negotiations, then everything would be fine,’ ” Obama said. You can watch the key Iran portions of the interview, including the Cheney reference, in the two videos below and the rest of the interview at the Daily Show's website.
Read more in Slate about Jon Stewart: