After calling Fox News Channel to task for its Barack Obama coverage, the Daily Show's Jon Stewart asked Fox host Chris Wallace if the network might need to change its stripes under the incoming Democratic administration. Actually no, Wallace said, because Obama, like all presidents, will inevitably screw up, and skeptical coverage will be rewarded. "Let me just say," Wallace added, "I worry about you. That William Ayers joke bombed. This crowd is not ready." He had a point.
It was true: vocal portions of the audience had objected to one or two of Stewart's Obama's jokes, even though the lines mocked campaign stereotypes about the politician rather than the president elect himself. (Click the video player above to watch.)
But campaign fever will break, and studio audiences will get less touchy about Obama jokes. And Stewart will be able to keep cranking out jokes for the same reason Fox News will be able to keep producing right-leaning commentary: Obama's honeymoon will end, as it does for all presidents. He will, inevitably, misstep.
The only question is whether there will be enough Obama mistakes to support everyone's ratings base. There's always Congress!