Yoo's interview with Stewart -- whose sometimes lacerating interviews of politicians and right-leaning media personalities have made him a hero to many liberals -- had been greatly anticipated. Something like a comeuppance was close for the man who had authored the so-called torture memos that provided legal justification for enhanced interrogation techniques like waterboarding.
To hear a number of commentators tell it, however, the ballyhooed showdown turned out to be a bust. Even pundits who have expressed high regard for "The Daily Show" seem to agree that Yoo more than held his own on Stewart's home court.
At The American Prospect, Adam Serwer lays out the case in an article titled "When Jon Stewart Fails," saying that the talk show host was simply not up to the challenge of interviewing his guest:
Spencer Ackerman, writing at The Washington Independent, states:Stewart found himself completely outmatched by a charming, tactful Yoo, who seemed far better prepared to defend granting virtually unlimited powers to the executive branch than ever before.
Washington Post columnist Ezra Klein took to Twitter to offer his summation of the face-off:It's a testament to Jon Stewart's extraordinary abilities to speak sensibly in an age of insanity that we expect him to skewer knaves like John Yoo. ... Still, maybe it shouldn't disappoint us to recognize that Yoo skillfully deflected most of Stewart's assaults.
Stewart himself seemed dissatisfied with his attempt to nail Yoo to the canvas. Describing the interview as "pretty unsatisfying," Stewart suggested that captured terrorists should be made to watch what turned out to be a legalistic tit for tat rather than a classic "Daily Show" take-down like the one administered to CNBC host Jim Cramer.Stewart didn't lay a glove on Yoo.
In case you missed it, here is how the interview unfolded. Part 1:
|The Daily Show With Jon Stewart||Mon - Thurs 11p / 10c|
|Daily Show: Exclusive - John Yoo Extended Interview Pt. 1|
and Part 2: