Nearly two years after Donald Trump was elected president, comedian Jon Stewart acknowledges he did not take the former reality TV star’s campaign seriously enough.
At the time, he called Trump’s White House bid a “gift from heaven” worthy of mockery but not of meaningful discussion.
In retrospect, of course, he says he was wrong and explained in a recent interview with CNN’s Christiane Amanpour why he was quick to write off the campaign back in 2015.
Stewart, who hosted Comedy Central’s “The Daily Show” at the time, said the way Trump announced his candidacy by gliding down to the lobby of Trump Tower was the first sign the whole thing was a joke.
“I thought America was going to go, ‘Is that an escalator in a mall? I’m not going to vote for that dude!'” he said.
The announcement speech that followed, Stewart said, cemented his initial impression.
“I didn’t think he meant it,” he said of Trump’s candidacy. “And when he gave that speech, quite frankly, I really thought when he said Mexico sends us the worst — rapist and murderers — I really thought he had disqualified himself.”