Maher found himself in his own tub of hot water after using the N-word during an interview last week, which drew some attention from the hole Griffin had dug for herself with the Trump stunt. On Friday, Maher explained that comedians are wired to make people laugh and, in the process, frequently cross the line. He gave Griffin as an example.
“My friend Kathy Griffin, who, by the way, owes me a fruit basket for getting her off the front page…” he joked. “There’s a similarity there because what she did, as much as I hate Trump, yeah, that’s wrong. You don’t do that to whoever the president is. But, you know, she was going for a laugh. And I understand that.
“We sometimes do cross the line. Where I wanted to say to her [was] when she said, ‘Trump broke me.’ No, he shouldn’t. And ‘My career is over.’ No, it is not. You make a mistake, you don’t have to go away. Everyone makes mistakes. Kathy Griffin should not go away.”
Griffin admitted she “went too far” when she posed with a fake bloody mask designed to look like the head of President Donald Trump. But her mea culpa did little to stave off the growing backlash. According to the Associated Press, several shows on her comedy tour have been scratched. And the comedian was dropped as co-host of CNN’s New Year’s
In a press conference with lawyer Lisa Bloom, Griffin said that she wasn’t sure her career could survive the backlash.
“I don’t think I will have a career after this,” she said. “I am going to be honest, he broke me. He broke me. And then I felt, ‘This isn’t right. This is not right. And I apologized because that was the right thing to do and I meant it.”
Although threats of violence against her have been coming in fast and furiously, Griffin told reporters that she will continue to mock the president.
“The death threats that I am getting are constant and they are detailed,” Griffin said at the press conference. “This president, of all people, is going to come after me? He picked the wrong redhead.”
Griffin added, “I’m gonna make fun of the president, and you know what? I’m going to make fun of him more now.”
Watch the video above, where Maher talks about Griffin and the nature of comedians starting at the 7:30 mark.