Bill Maher and guests Salman Rushdie, Michael Moynihan and Amy Holmes discussed the 2016 Democratic National Convention during Thursday’s special edition of Real Time. The episode was preceded by a repeat due to Hillary Clinton’s speech running long and began about 27 minutes later than scheduled.
Maher noted that Clinton had just become the first woman nominated to run for President by a major political party in this country, and that elsewhere in the world they were congratulating us and welcoming us to the 1960s.
“First, lady Ghostbusters, and now this. America’s on a roll!” he snarked.
Maher talked for a while about the uproar caused by GOP nominee Donald Trump suggesting Russian hackers look for Clinton’s deleted emails. It’s the latest incendiary comment Trump has walked back; this time Trump went with an “I was being sarcastic” walk-back.
“It’s like Oscar Wilde is running for President,” Maher said, suggesting next time Trump’s being sarcastic he use air quotes so that people will know.
One night earlier, President Obama gave a keynote address. “He nailed it,” Maher said. “It was an amazing speech or, as Fox News put it: Black Man Steals Show.”
In one of the most memorable exchanges during his panel, Rushdie acknowledged that it’s not fashionable to love Clinton but that he does adding, “I know what it’s like … being demonized and vilified” for decades.
In the late ’80s, Iran’s Ayatollah Khomeini issued a fatwa ordering Muslims to assassinate Rushdie after the publication of his novel The Satanic Verses. Rushdie said he respected Clinton for coming across as strong as she does despite all the hate steered her way.
Maher and all his panelists gave Clinton props for having elliptically addressed her husband’s infidelity during her acceptance speech, when she mentioned them having been through good times and some heartaches.
“It is good to point to the elephant in the room,” said Rushdie in a bit of understatement.
“I always thought they had a real marriage. F*cking around can live side-by-side with real love,” Maher said. “Bill Clinton is a dog, and he loves her. Europeans can do that – we should be able to do it too.”