Jon Stewart: Why I’m Leaving The Daily Show

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Jon Stewart Reason Leaving

By Daniel Gates

Jon Stewart Reason Leaving

(Comedy Central/Getty Images)

Jon Stewart opens up about his decision to leave “The Daily Show” in a new interview with The Guardian, explaining that there was no single moment that led him to quit, so much as the slow realization that it just was not what he wanted to do anymore.

“It’s not like I thought the show wasn’t working any more, or that I didn’t know how to do it. It was more, ‘Yup, it’s working. But I’m not getting the same satisfaction,’” reveals Stewart. He goes on to say, “These things are cyclical. You have moments of dissatisfaction, and then you come out of it and it’s OK. But the cycles become longer and maybe more entrenched, and that’s when you realize, ‘OK, I’m on the back side of it now.’”

There were other considerations, too. He wants to spend more time with his family. And he’s exhausted by the repetitiveness of skewering politics. Stewart explains, “Honestly, it was a combination of the limitations of my brain and a format that is geared towards following an increasingly redundant process, which is our political process. I was just thinking, ‘Are there other ways to skin this cat?’”

“And, beyond that, it would be nice to be home when my little elves get home from school, occasionally,” he tells the outlet. He says he has no desire to cover the 2016 presidential race: “I’d covered an election four times, and it didn’t appear that there was going to be anything wildly different about this one.”

That said, he realizes that it could be an ideal time for his replacement to hit the ground running. “For the show, you don’t want to leave when the cupboard’s bare,” says Stewart. “So I think it’s a better introduction when you have something providing you with assisted fuel, like a presidential campaign. But really, the value of this show is so much deeper than my contribution.”

He sounds like he’s looking forward to not immersing himself in cable news anymore. “Watching these channels all day is incredibly depressing,” says Stewart. “I live in a constant state of depression. I think of us as turd miners. I put on my helmet, I go and mine turds, hopefully I don’t get turd lung disease.” Stewart has not announced the date of his final “Daily Show.” He will be replaced by Trevor Noah. What do you think about what Stewart says?

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