The New York State Senate Embroiled In “Yogurt Debate,” Late Night Comedians Have A Field Day

The New York State “yogurt debate” has proven to be an easy target for late night comedians. It’s no stretch to see why. The State Senate recently spent forty minutes debating whether or not to make yogurt the official state snack.

Last night David Letterman made the senate “yogurt debate” the subject of a segment called “Your Tax Dollars at Work.” Letterman wrapped up his monologue by introducing the segment.

“Here’s a new segment, ladies and gentleman. You know how you have states, and they have their own state legislatures. Some convene for a couple of weeks, some convene for six months. And they… and they pretend they are doing things for the state. We don’t pay much attention to them until there’s trouble, like a scandal or something. I don’t know how any of this work. We’ve put together a segment called New York State, that’s where we live, New York State…New York State, colon…Your Tax Dollars at Work.”

The video clip that followed was edited for comedy’s sake with rapid exchanges between senators arguing about, among other things, what the definition of the word “snack” is.

“What exactly are we defining as a snack?” asked Sen. Gustavo Rivera.

“I think it’s self-explanatory. I mean, you have breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and then you have snacks,” said the bill’s sponsor, Sen. Michael Ranzenhofer.

“Did you consider, say, the potato chip?” Rivera asked, “What if the pretzel was dipped in yogurt?”

The Daily Show’s, Jon Stewart referred to the forty minute “yogurt debate” video as, “maybe the best 40 minutes any legislative chamber anywhere in the country has ever spent.” Stewart continued to mock the New York Senate for more than eight minutes showing extended clips from the video. He closed the segment with a message to the senate.

“Before the Assembly takes up debate on Bill A8994, I want to remind them that when it comes to yogurt attaining the designation of state snack, I must reinforce to our representatives that the good people of New York do not give a (expletive). I think I speak for many New Yorkers. As far as many New Yorkers are concerned, our state snack is who gives a (expletive); a perfect companion to our state flower, who (expletive)-ing cares; and our state bird, which is the kind you flip.”

According to ABC News, “Other states with official state snacks include Texas (chips and salsa), Illinois (popcorn) and South Carolina (boiled peanuts).”