WASHINGTON -- For South Dakota Sen. John Thune (R), nothing says welcome like beef jerky.
It's what he hands out to visitors of his Senate office. On Thursday, the visitor was Jon Stewart, who wanted to talk to Thune about 9/11 and was offered the chewy snack in lieu of a meeting with the lawmaker.
But Stewart doesn't eat meat.
He did get something out of the proffer, however -- a chance to make a few jokes on a day that was otherwise filled with very serious and emotional pleas with 9/11 responders to pass a new health and compensation bill.
It turned out to be a common theme as Stewart and ailing responders made the rounds of Senate offices that all feature their own state's specialties.
Watch a few of those lighter moments above.