President Obama lamented comedian Jon Stewart’s impending departure from “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart” during the president’s final appearance on the show late Tuesday.


“I can’t believe that you’re leaving before me … I’m issuing a new executive order: Jon Stewart cannot leave the show,” Obama said to laughs.

“It’s being challenged in the courts.”

Stewart dished it back to Obama, telling the president that he believes his departure is more of a “states’ rights issue.”

The pair traded barbs on a slew of topics, including the Iranian nuclear deal, military exercises in the Southwest that have drawn concern from some conspiracy theorists and the president’s own legacy.

Obama questioned critics of the nuclear deal, asserting that the detractors are acting as if the U.S. “had brought Dick Cheney to the negotiations, everything would be fine.”

And the president chalked up victories on Iran and fast-track to the result of years of work.

“You get better as you go along, its like any job, you get more experience. But I do think what happened is that a lot of the work that we did early starts bearing fruit later,” Obama said.

“It just so happens that in the past couple of months, people are seeing some of the work we started way back when I first came in."

The show also taped additional portions of the interview that couldn’t fit in the show’s 30-minute window, so producers put those excerpts online. In one, Stewart challenged Obama on why his administration had been unable to complete reforms of the Veterans Administration.

“If you have a government that was built on 1930 models and it’s not updated for decades, there’s going to be a gap in terms of what is going on now relative to what other folks do,” Obama said.

He added that the government has a “sacred duty” to provide for veterans when they return home but that insufficient funding has hampered that effort as the number of veterans climbs because of recent wars.