Comedian Jon Stewart is retiring from "The Daily Show," the satirical nightly newscast he has used to pillory politicians for more than a decade.

Comedy Central confirmed social media reports of Stewart's announcement in a statement tweeted Tuesday evening.

 

 

"Jon has been at the heart of Comedy Central, championing and nurturing the best talent in the industry, in front of and behind the camera," the network said in its statement.

The network added that Stewart would remain with the show until "later this year."

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His guest on Tuesday night will be former Obama adviser David Axelrod, who called it an "emotional night" in a tweet.

The reasons for Stewart's retirement were not immediately clear, though he took a leave of absence last year to direct his first feature film.

Stewart has made a habit over his career of skewering on air politicians he sees as being hypocrites, oftentimes making use of footage from their past appearances on cable news shows.

But despite his role as a scorching critic of the political and media classes, they kept coming back.

It was a ritual for every Washington figure promoting a campaign or book to come on the show and fight their way past Stewart's barbs in pursuit of his young audience.

Though Stewart was seen by many as harder on conservatives than liberals, one of his toughest interviews in recent memory came in 2013 with then-Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen SebeliusKathleen SebeliusFederal investigators concluded Ryan Zinke's MAGA socks violated Hatch Act Kansas Senate race splits wide open without Pompeo Is a presidential appointment worth the risk? MORE.

The launch of Healthcare.gov had been disastrous, and Stewart took Sebelius to task for the administration's decision to make individuals subject to ObamacCre a year before businesses were required to obey provisions of the law.

Stewart was dissatisfied with Sebelius' answers on the issue, and he kept pushing.

He ended the exchange with a classic Stewart zinger: "Can we come back and ask more questions? Can I ask the same one?"

This story was updated at 7:52 p.m.