Jon Stewart blasts Trump: 'Everybody who is a Nazi sure does seem to like him'
Jon Stewart appeared at New York’s Radio City Music Hall on Thursday night as part of Dave Chappelle’s extended residency there and slammed President Donald Trump as a “terrible person” who has trafficked in “white supremacist tropes” in the past.
Discussing the white nationalist riots in Charlottesville, Virginia last weekend and President Trump’s comments that “both sides” bore some responsibility for the violence, Stewart said, “Two sides! And I believe they are called the Allied powers and the Axis powers. And we used to be with the Allied powers.”
He added of Trump, via a transcript from New York Times writer Sopan Deb, “I don’t think everybody who likes him is a Nazi but everybody who is a Nazi sure does seem to like him.”
After reading prepared remarks on Monday that condemned white supremacists, neo-Nazis, and the KKK for the Charlottesville violence, which left one counter-protester dead, Trump changed course on Tuesday. “What about the alt-left that came charging at the — as you say — the alt-right? Do they have any semblance of guilt? What about the fact that they came charging with clubs in their hands, swinging clubs? Do they have any problem? I think they do,” Trump told reporters. He later added, “I watched this very closely, much more closely than you people watched it, and you had a group on one side that was bad, and you had a group on the other side that was also very violent. Nobody wants to say that. But I’ll say it right now. You had a group on the other side that came charging in without a permit and they were very, very violent.”
Speaking Thursday, Stewart said he wasn’t surprised by Trump’s behavior, citing his 2013 Twitter war with the future president as proof.
“I have a particular beef with him. So all this sh– is new to people. They’re like Donald Trump is a racist? Four years ago, I come into the office one morning and I walk in and somebody says to me, ‘Dude, did you see what Trump tweeted about you?'” Stewart recalled. “And I was trying to be cool so I was like, ‘F— yeah!’ So he tweeted, ‘If Jon Leibowitz is so above it all, why did he change his name?’ Basically, saying to people, ‘Just so you know, he’s a Jew.’ Like this face doesn’t give that away. People are going to look at this face and be like, ‘I’ve seen that on a yentile program.’ So basically it goes back to an old white supremacist trope which is ‘Jews amongst us.’ The crypto-Jew. So what Donald Trump was saying was — he was signaling to the underworld that Jews are amongst us.”
Last week, white supremacists in Charlottesville chanted “Jews will not replace us” as they marched on the University of Virginia campus to protest the removal of a Robert E. Lee statues. Of those people, Trump said, “you had people in that group who were there to protest the taking down of, to them, a very, very important statue and renaming a statue from Robert E. Lee to another name.” He later also claimed the march was filled with “people protesting very quietly the taking down of the statue of Robert E. Lee,” though noted “some bad ones” also participated.
Stewart has often talked about Trump’s tweets and joked at the Stand Up for Heroes event in November 2016 just before the election, “This is when I realized he was trying to point out that I was a Jew. I always thought my face did that.”
Read Stewart’s monologue below.