Highlights from Friday’s Crossfire (thanks Kevan for the heads up):
TUCKER CARLSON: You have a chance to interview the Democratic nominee. You asked him questions such as “How are you holding up? Is it hard not to take the attacks personally?” … Why not ask him a real question, instead of just suck up to him?
JON STEWART: Yes. “How are you holding up?” is a real suck-up. And I?m actually giving him a hot stone massage as we were doing it. You know, it’s interesting to hear you talk about my responsibility … that the news organizations look to Comedy Central for their cues on integrity. If your idea of confronting me is that I don’t ask hard-hitting enough news questions, we’re in bad shape, fellows.
PAUL BEGALA: Let me get this straight. If the indictment is — if the indictment is — and I have seen you say this — that Crossfire reduces everything, as I said in the intro, to left, right, black, white.
BEGALA: Well, it’s because, see, we’re a debate show.
STEWART: No, no, no, no, that would be great. I would love to see a debate show.
CARLSON: Jon, Jon, Jon, I’m sorry. I think you’re a good comedian. I think your lectures are boring.
STEWART: Now, this is theater. It’s obvious. How old are you?
STEWART: And you wear a bow tie.
CARLSON: Yes, I do. I do.
STEWART: So this is theater.
CARLSON: Now, let me just…
STEWART: Now, listen, I’m not suggesting that you’re not a smart guy, because those are not easy to tie. … But the thing is that this — you’re doing theater, when you should be doing debate, which would be great.
BEGALA: We do, do…
STEWART: It’s not honest. What you do is not honest. What you do is partisan hackery. And I will tell you why I know it.
CARLSON: You had John Kerry on your show and you sniff his throne and you’re accusing us of partisan hackery?
CARLSON: You’ve got to be kidding me. He comes on and you…
STEWART: You’re on CNN. The show that leads into me is puppets making crank phone calls. … What is wrong with you?
CARLSON: Well, I’m just saying, there’s no reason for you — when you have this marvelous opportunity not to be the guy’s butt boy, to go ahead and be his butt boy. Come on. It’s embarrassing.
STEWART: You have a responsibility to the public discourse, and you fail miserably.
CARLSON: You need to get a job at a journalism school, I think.
STEWART: You need to go to one. The thing that I want to say is, when you have people on for just knee-jerk, reactionary talk…
CARLSON: Wait. I thought you were going to be funny. Come on. Be funny.
STEWART: No. No. I’m not going to be your monkey … I watch your show every day. And it kills me.
CARLSON: I can tell you love it.
STEWART: It’s so painful to watch.
CARLSON: Is this really Jon Stewart? What is this, anyway?
STEWART: Yes, it’s someone who watches your show and cannot take it anymore. I just can’t.
CARLSON: I do think you’re more fun on your show. Just my opinion.
STEWART: You know what’s interesting, though? You’re as big a dick on your show as you are on any show.
Those are excerpts from the show. For a fair and balanced look at the entire debacle, check out the MP3.