First dismissed by some as an appointed senator who was no more than Hillary Lite, Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand now seems to be the Capital's latest it-girl.
For proof, check out what Jon Stewart of Comedy Central's "The Daily Show" had to say about Gillibrand, D-N.Y., last night.
Stewart, famous for treating politicians with the disrespect that they've earned, instead showered Gillibrand with love during her eight-minute appearance on his show Tuesday.
"You are adorable,” Stewart said, praising the two-year senator for her role in passing a health benefits bill for 9/11 rescuers, legislation that Stewart himself has long pushed on his program. Stewart also had kind words for Gillibrand's work to pass legislation repealing the "Don't Ask Don't Tell" policy on gays in the military.
With Gillibrand beaming quietly at his side, Stewart slyly indicated that her accomplishments were out of keeping with the modern ways of Washington.
"What are you trying to pull, Gillibrand?” he asked. “I thought the idea was knee-jerk reactionary motions to keep political power, not the passing of things to improve people’s lives. You’ve got a lot to learn, Gillibrand.”
One thing she has learned, though, is to not try to compete with television's reigning king of political comedy. She kept her jokes to a minimum and dished praise all around -- to Stewart for his 9/11 advocacy, and to everyone else who had pushed that bill.
And when Stewart suggested that New York's senior senator, Democrat Chuck Schumer, was "made of spotlight-eating bacteria," Gillibrand gamely, and politically correctly, said: "Chuck is a great partner. We work very well together."
Here's Gillibrand's entire appearance:
|The Daily Show With Jon Stewart||Mon - Thurs 11p / 10c|