After 25 years in comedy, Kate Clinton has seen a lot of change in the public’s acceptance and perception of gays. Along the way, she’s lost none of her wily wit. The “retro, pomo, homo, promo, major, lesbo domo” would make an excellent replacement for Rosie O’Donnell on The View, a job she says she’d accept, “in a New York minute.”

When did you first know you were funny?

In first grade I lip-synched “I’m Getting Nuttin’ for Christmas” at a holiday assembly and made Miss Como, the gorgeous single fourth-grade teacher fall off her chair. That’s when I absolutely knew.

If you got The View job, how would you handle Elisabeth Hasselbeck?

Better than her husband handles a football.

What is the best thing about performing in the red states?

I feel like Bob Hope on a USO tour. But without the putter.

Who do people say you look like?

A Campbell’s Soup kid, the one on the left.

What’s the comedy trend for 2007?

Bogus benchmarks. Contempt of Congress. Paisley capris.

What kind of humor offends you?

The unfunny kind. By the way, that Don Anus episode killed Don Ho.

Last book read?

Blue Grit: True Democrats Take Back the Politics From the Politicians, by Laura Flanders

Why is your comedy important to the world?

People can laugh and think at the same time. Just as they are able to be against the Iraq War and support the troops at the same time.Do you have groupies?

I have “slalkers” — slacking stalkers. They come to a show every 16 months.

They say comedy comes from pain — is this the case with you?

Turns out, it’s often gas.

Who did you take to the prom?

I went with Bob Petrello for half an hour, then we hopped in his VW and went to see Janis Joplin in concert at the Syracuse War Memorial. We were conspicuously overdressed.

Where do you want to be in five years?

Head joke writer for President Nancy Pelosi.

Kate Clinton performs at the Richard and Karen Carpenter Performing Arts Center, 6200 Atherton St., Long Beach, Fri., June 1, 8 p.m.; $35 and $75 VIP (priority seating & postconcert reception). (562) 439-6919.

LA Weekly