It was an uncomfortably tense scene on the set of "The View" this Tuesday after host Elisabeth Hasselbeck confronted guest Bill Maher over a joke he had made about her during a February episode of "Real Time."
Mediate explains the background:
...Maher had made a joke that, were Hosni Mubarak to release the then-captured Lara Logan, they could trade him [Elisabeth] Hasselbeck. At the time, Hasselbeck had been furious, starting a mini feud that an unrepentant Maher seemed to have no interest in fighting. That dynamic was continued all these months later as Hasselbeck was still very, very upset and Maher was still very, very uninterested in fighting her.
Hasselbeck was clearly ready to go at it from the moment Maher took the stage. After he made a joke about Republicans and then jokingly apologized to her, she said he could apologize later. But she then decided it couldn’t wait and jumped right into it, bringing up the joke as well as the horrible circumstances that we now know befell Logan in Egypt (it is important to note that Maher made the joke a week before those details were released). An annoyed-seeming Maher quickly responded that he does a comedy show, she’s a public figure, and, as such, she’s “fodder for comedians to make comments on.”
Business Insider captured some of the back and forth, which also included Hasselbeck snapping at the audience:
When Hasselbeck re-read the joke, the audience tittered with laughter, which got her blood racing even more. "That's fine if you want to laugh," she said, "but I ... sit with the best comedians... you can't tell me I'm wrong when I say that wasn't that funny."
Maher calmly noted that she's a public figure and the comment wasn't aimed at her personally.
"Would you say it again?" she pressed.
"Would I say it again, having my crystal ball, [if I] knew I was coming here and had to spend my whole segment talking about it?" he answered. "No, I wouldn't. It wouldn't really be worth it."
As Maher discussed the candidates, she snapped, "Wow, I actually feel smarter sitting next to you."
"Really?" Maher said. "Because I feel like I'm in high school sitting next to you."
None of Hasselbeck's co-hosts seemed to offer their colleague a hand either, making the exchange all the more painful to watch: