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About (Late) Last Night: Jon Stewart goes easy on Rick Sanchez

October 5, 2010 |  8:01 am
The Daily Show With Jon Stewart Mon - Thurs 11p / 10c
Hurty Sanchez
www.thedailyshow.com

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Rick Sanchez was lucky to have lost his CNN job on a Friday. Along with calling "The Daily Show" host Jon Stewart a "bigot," Sanchez made off-color comments about Jews on Thursday before being fired by the network. But the weekend allowed the dust to (mostly) settle, and without the late-night jokesters laughing at his expense, Sanchez could pack his things in peace. And in disgrace, of course.

At a charity event on Saturday, Stewart couldn't resist entirely. When he asked attendees to make a donation toward autism education, he said: "If you dented a car, $50. If you cheated on something to get ahead, $500. And if you went on radio and said the Jews control the media … you better hold onto your money." He showed some restraint, but on Monday night on "The Daily Show," Stewart had his chance, and he took the high road. More or less.

"I want to clarify something here; we weren't making fun of Rick Sanchez because of some slight to his ethnicity," Stewart said on Monday's show. "It's just that we here see him as kind of a complex television character, who is flawed but fascinating to watch every week, and we put this whole bit together to kind of demonstrate that point. And then they fire the guy! So doing the whole bit now just seems kind of mean." Stewart paused. "But you gotta have just a little taste of it!"

The montage that followed perfectly paired clips of Sanchez with Michael Scott, the bumbling, politically incorrect boss on "The Office," who, Stewart noted, needs a replacement. "Sanchez is available," Stewart reminded, in his trademark, condescending falsetto.

As for Sanchez, sensitive as he is, he has to know this ribbing could've been much worse.

-- Joe Coscarelli

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CNN fires Rick Sanchez after remarks

Who you calling a bigot?

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