Jon Stewart isn't one for holding back his criticisms -- especially when they're focused upon conservatives and GOP adherents. On Thursday night, the host of Comedy Central's "The Daily Show" set his targets on Fox News' Megyn Kelly, essentially calling her a hypocrite for her vocal support for maternity leave. See the clip, below:
As The Blaze reported last week, the anchor of "America Live" recently went back to work following the birth of her second child. Upon returning, Kelly had an impassioned, on-air debate with Mike Gallagher during which she made a number of comments about the importance of maternity leave.
Stewart seized upon these statements in an effort to juxtapose Kelly's views on maternity leave with her past comments on entitlement programs. In the video, you'll see old clips of Kelly lamenting the nation's entitlement situation. Among her statements, you'll find her saying:
"Do you think [that we can get] the tentacles that government has placed into our lives out. Or are we just stuck we these massive entitlement programs that we have now?"
"They're in the system...it's like trying to take Social Security away. Once it's in, how do you get rid of it."
While these comments are certainly not favorable of the current state of entitlement affairs, there's an important question to ask: Are maternity leave and the laws that govern it different from the government structures that provide what some see as never-ending "handouts?" The comedian seems to see an inherent comparison between the two, which is why he lambastes Kelly for supporting one and not the other.
During her debate with Gallagher, Kelly also says, "If anything the United States is in the Dark Ages when it comes to maternity leave." Again, Stewart uses this statement, among others, to claim that Kelly is being a flip-flopper. Interestingly, NJ.com defends Kelly on this point, writing:
Kelly is right that the U.S. is unusual in its stance on parental leave.
A recent report by Human Rights Watch showed that 178 countries around the world have national laws guaranteeing paid maternity leave. The three countries that don't? Papua New Guinea, Swaziland, and the United States. (NPR offers this graphic that compares policies around the world.)
In the past, Kelly has certainly shown a dislike for "mandated benefits," but isn't it a stretch, to a degree, to compare maternity leave to Welfare, Social Security or Medicare? The former simply allows workers to stay out of work for up to 12 weeks (as per the Family and Medical Leave Act), taking unpaid leave.
Taking this into account, Kelly may have an interesting (and hopefully a spirited) response to the liberal comedian.
(h/t Business Insider)