On Tuesday night's Daily Show, Jon Stewart took a long walk through the Republican Party's shifting pronouncements on immigration reform legislation. President Obama has made it a top priority, Stewart noted, but House Republicans have blocked immigration bills from coming up for a vote. He got a special tingle, though, when House Speaker John Boehner declared that after 15 years, "it's time to deal with" immigration reform.
That was on Jan. 20. By Feb. 8, Fox News pundits were arguing that it's not time to deal with immigration reform. Why not? asks Stewart. One reason: Republicans fear that Democrats will get all the credit, bolstering their stranglehold on the Latino vote. "Fine," says Stewart. Call it "The Republican Party Presents the 'Only we love Hispanics' Act of Año Dos Mil Catorce."
Next, Stewart tackled GOP pundit concerns that passing immigration reform could anger GOP voters in a midterm election year. "Yes, immigration reform might alienate some of your base," he conceded, "but it might also embasen some of the aliens." Not trying to win over Latinos is demographic suicide, he added. And it's not just about politics. Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), for example, argued last year that the GOP needs to reform the immigration system because it's the just, compassionate thing to do.
Stewart was still bullish on immigration reform... until Monday, when word came that House Republicans have decided not to tackle the issue this year. Boehner argued that Republicans won't budge because they don't trust Obama to enforce the law. Stewart was stumped. Enforcing the law is the president's top job, he said, and congressional Republicans accusing Obama of ignoring the laws of the land is "perhaps the greatest projection in the history of psychology."
Roll clip of Obama-era Republicans blatantly trying to block or circumvent U.S. laws — classic Daily Show fare. Republicans blaming their immigration reform inaction on Obama's law-enforcement record "is like Bob Costas saying, 'No, I don't want to borrow your glasses — I don't know where they've been," Stewart said. He got a dig in at Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.), too, for trolling Boehner by suggesting the law not kick in until Obama's out of office in 2017 — just "the kind of passive-aggressive democracy our founders intended."
But no matter, Stewart sighed, because Boehner's office rejected the proposal on the grounds that it would give Obama no incentive to enforce the laws on the books now for the rest of his term. "That makes no sense!" Stewart shouted. Everyone agrees that we need a new immigration law, but Republicans won't move "because the only way to keep the president enforcing our current, disastrous immigration law is to talk about — but not deliver — a better one"?
At least Chris Christie "knows how to clog a border," he quipped.
If you were confused about the reference to Bob Costas' eyewear above, here's Stewart's short introduction to Tuesday's show:
In the middle segment, Stewart turned to French President Francois Hollande's state visit. After getting in a good line about how the Al Jazeera America clip he just played was "inappropriately in-depth about foreign policy," Stewart turned to what the "American America" networks and cable news channels are focusing on: Hollande's love life.
To be fair, Hollande's serial monogamy is sort of interesting, especially as his recent affair and subsequent split from his partner of seven years plays out against France's traditionally laissez-faire attitude toward presidential sex lives.
Well, Stewart was unimpressed with Hollande's affairs and the logistical nightmares of his decision to come to America sans female companion. What kind of logistical problems was he referencing? For starters, the state dinner — namely, the seating chart and the engraved invitations that included the name of Hollande's ex-First Lady. "You know what, we can kill people with sky robots from 1,000 miles away," Stewart deadpanned. "I think we can shred 300 invitations." Um, yeah. Watch: