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19 Reasons Why We're Thankful For Jon Stewart On "The Daily Show"

We'll need a million Moments of Zen to emotionally endure this loss.

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Nearly 16 years after he took over from Craig Kilborn as host, Jon Stewart announced on Tuesday that he would be leaving The Daily Show.

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But it's hard to imagine a TV future without him for many reasons...

1. Like, the fact that, throughout his tenure, Stewart fostered and supported on-air talent, like Steve Carell and Stephen Colbert.

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2. And Larry Wilmore, Krisen Schaal, and Ed Helms.

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3. And, of course, John Oliver.

Who basically imported The Daily Show to HBO with Last Week Tonight. We also have Stewart to thank for Rachael Harris, Al Madrigal, Demetri Martin, Lewis Black, Samantha Bee, Aasif Mandvi, Beth Littleford, Rob Riggle, and John Hodgman.
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Who basically imported The Daily Show to HBO with Last Week Tonight. We also have Stewart to thank for Rachael Harris, Al Madrigal, Demetri Martin, Lewis Black, Samantha Bee, Aasif Mandvi, Beth Littleford, Rob Riggle, and John Hodgman.

4. He is ruthlessly funny about how awful TV cable news is...

Pointing out the number of times Fox News was face-slappingly wrong about facts small and large is a little like shooting fish in a barrel, granted — but Stewart still evinced just the right level of bemused rage anyway. And although Fox News certainly provided Stewart with a regular stream of material, if MSNBC screwed up, Stewart was also right there, his knives sharpened. The network that suffered Stewart's most incisive comic scorn, however, was by far CNN, including a Kickstarter campaign to buy the network!
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Pointing out the number of times Fox News was face-slappingly wrong about facts small and large is a little like shooting fish in a barrel, granted — but Stewart still evinced just the right level of bemused rage anyway. And although Fox News certainly provided Stewart with a regular stream of material, if MSNBC screwed up, Stewart was also right there, his knives sharpened. The network that suffered Stewart's most incisive comic scorn, however, was by far CNN, including a Kickstarter campaign to buy the network!

5. And how awful partisan bickering in Congress is…

Stewart made no secret of his ideologically liberal point of view, but Republicans in Congress over the last 16 years have certainly proved ripe for satire — like, most recently, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, whom Stewart likened to a turtle.Of course, Democrats in Congress have also proved ripe for satire, and Stewart has also been happy to oblige.
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Stewart made no secret of his ideologically liberal point of view, but Republicans in Congress over the last 16 years have certainly proved ripe for satire — like, most recently, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, whom Stewart likened to a turtle.

Of course, Democrats in Congress have also proved ripe for satire, and Stewart has also been happy to oblige.

6. And how awful corporate financial shenanigans are.

Jim Cramer still probably wakes up in cold sweats.
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Jim Cramer still probably wakes up in cold sweats.

7. Stewart also mobilized younger generations to vote in a way few other on-air commentators ever have.

#IndecisionForever
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#IndecisionForever

8. He supported authors who never would have as large a platform as The Daily Show otherwise...

It's not easy to fill the guest spots on a late night talk show that airs four nights a week, especially one as unusual as The Daily Show was at its outset. But Stewart turned that into an advantage by booking authors of non-fiction books, which covered everything from the expansion of presidential powers to the future of cognitive studies to the expansion of the Taliban on the Pakistan-Afghanistan border.
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It's not easy to fill the guest spots on a late night talk show that airs four nights a week, especially one as unusual as The Daily Show was at its outset. But Stewart turned that into an advantage by booking authors of non-fiction books, which covered everything from the expansion of presidential powers to the future of cognitive studies to the expansion of the Taliban on the Pakistan-Afghanistan border.

9. And documentarians as well.

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10. Nobody used chyrons better.

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11. Or more liberally.

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12. He found a way to be funny and sincere at the same time in his first post-9/11 show.

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13. And he got Crossfire canceled — for a short time.

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14. He knew how to tap into race relations with a proper, measured response (when, by comparison, the mainstream news outlets struggled).

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15. Ditto for gay rights.

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16. He bantered firmly but good-naturedly with ideological opposites...

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17. But wasn't afraid to be hard on Obama, either.

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18. He did poignant — and fantastic — parodies way before Jimmy Fallon.

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19. And (last, but certainly not least) he had a fabulously strange grudge against Arbys.

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Thankfully we don't have to say goodbye quite yet (his last episode is still T.B.D.), but just know this is how America will feel after watching Stewart sign off for the last time.

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And for now, we can still watch The Daily Show with Jon Stewart on Mondays through Thursdays at 11 p.m. on Comedy Central.

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