Hostage negotiator gives Jon Stewart tips on dealing with GOP over shutdown

Jon Stewart had Jason Jones consult a hostage negotiator for tips on how to deal with Republicans who are holding the federal government, and the American people, hostage in order to bring down Obamacare.

It didn’t go well.


Hostage negotiator Voss: Be careful not to be judgmental. Don’t be condescending. I mean, just try to see it from her perspective.

Jason Jones: Don’t be condescending? That’s all I know how to be.

Hostage negotiator Voss: Alright, just say something innocuous, get her talking.

Jason Jones (picks up megaphone): My name is Jason Jones, I’m here to listen to you. What are your demands?

GOP strategist Noelle Nikpour: Can you just put the microphone down?

Jason Jones: It’s called a megaphone.

Hostage negotiator Voss: Don’t be condescending, that’s not the strategy. Just talk about things you think she might like, try to find some common ground.

Jason Jones (speaking almost robotically): Noelle, talk to me about how Obamacare will hurt small businesses and their employees.

Hostage negotiator Voss: Alright, nicely done.

GOP strategist Noelle Nikpour: It’s going to be disastrous for small businesses.

Jones to microphone: I’m sorry, I just can’t keep this up, it’s so stupid.

Hostage negotiator: It’s not stupid to her. You’ve gotta realize that even in her world, this makes sense.

Jones: Please continue with your… thoughts.

Jones voice-over: Voss taught me that keeping the hostage-taker talking is crucial, no matter what is coming out of their mouth.

GOP strategist: Obamacare is going to be one of the worst things – one of the worst things – in American history.

Jones: One of the worst things in American history, huh? Umm…


Hostage negotiator: No, no, don’t attack.

In the end, Jones realizes that it’s hopeless: “The problem is, no matter what we do, the GOP is holding something hostage that they just don’t value.”

Follow me on Twitter: @aravosis | @americablog | @americabloggay | Facebook | Instagram | Google+ | LinkedIn. John Aravosis is the Executive Editor of AMERICAblog, which he founded in 2004. He has a joint law degree (JD) and masters in Foreign Service from Georgetown; and has worked in the US Senate, World Bank, Children's Defense Fund, the United Nations Development Programme, and as a stringer for the Economist. He is a frequent TV pundit, having appeared on the O'Reilly Factor, Hardball, World News Tonight, Nightline, AM Joy & Reliable Sources, among others. John lives in Washington, DC. .

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