American satirist Fran Lebowitz stirred controversy on Friday night when she joked during an interview with Bill Maher on HBO the U.S. President Donald Trump should be turned over the Saudis as a means of punishment,
“Certainly, he deserves to be impeached. I mean, impeachment is just the beginning of what he deserves. Not even scratching the surface of what he deserves,” Lebowitz told Maher. “Whenever I think about this and what he really deserves, I think, ‘We should turn him over to the Saudis, you know, his buddies. The same Saudis who got rid of that reporter, you know. Maybe they can do the same for him.'”
After the show’s producers noticed the immediate backlash to her comments on social media, Lebowitz addressed the remark during the “Overtime” segment of the show. “We’re making a joke, we went too far, is that where we’re at?” Maher began before handing over to Lebowitz.
“I saw your face when I said it,” she told Maher. “I didn’t realize that I had said it. I had 12 cups of coffee. I regret saying it.”
Maher then added, “You know, everyone’s too, too, too, too … ” Maher told his guests on the panel. “I mean, it’s a live show. You really don’t want to see the president dismembered by the Saudis. I don’t like Donald Trump either. … But no matter who the president is, we don’t want physical harm.”
Lebowitz then apologized, “I did not mean that and I regret saying it. I regret that everyone misinterpreted it because they misinterpret everything.”