“Hillary started out with a good week… but then she had some trouble at the airport with her baggage—and when I say ‘her baggage’ I mean her husband,” announced Bill Maher.
The political satirist kicked off this week’s edition of HBO’s Real Time with Bill Maher by addressing former president Bill Clinton’s eyebrow-raising airplane meeting with Attorney General Loretta Lynch in Phoenix, Arizona. The two met on Monday night when Clinton left his plane and boarded Lynch’s, where they claim to have engaged in a 30-minute chat that was purely social, but that Lynch later acknowledged “could give [people] another reason to have questions and concerns” about how the government conducts itself, and offered that, “I certainly wouldn’t do it again.”
You see, Lynch is overseeing the federal investigation of Hillary Clinton’s personal email server, and will be the final word on whether to indict (or not indict) the presumptive Democratic nominee for president. She’s said she will adhere to whatever recommendations her staff and the F.B.I. make regarding whether to indict Clinton, but the so-called airplane meeting still raised plenty of questions.
“OK, here’s what happened: Attorney General Loretta Lynch was at the airport in Phoenix as part of a national tour to promote community policing, and Bill Clinton was at the airport because that’s near where all the strip clubs are,” joked Maher. “Clinton saw the attorney general’s plane across the tarmac, so he boarded her plane to talk—as one does. We all jump off our planes onto the tarmac to say hello to friends on other planes, right?
“So now it’s a big scandal because Attorney General Lynch, of course, is the person deciding whether to indict Hillary Clinton for the ongoing email investigation,” he continued. “So, for all the planes to pop onto, this was the wrong one for Bill Clinton. Now, Bill says that the conversation with Attorney General Lynch was very innocent. It was just about grandkids, and the weather, and how neither will exist if Trump is elected. But hey! Very innocent. No, Attorney General Lynch, you do what you want! I’m just here to talk about the grandkids—who will all be dead, if Hillary doesn’t win—but do whatever you want!”
Following news of the meeting, House Republicans have called for Lynch to recuse herself from Clinton’s case—a step she says she will not be taking—while Donald Trump, the presumptive Republican nominee, has said the meeting “opened up a Pandora’s box” and pegged it as another example of how “the special interests are controlling your government.”
Since Bill Clinton is acting as a powerful surrogate for his wife, traveling across the country to give speeches on her behalf, the sketchy meeting may inevitably lead those to question Lynch’s ruling—no matter the outcome.
“The fact that the meeting that I had is now casting a shadow over how people are going to view that work is something that I take seriously, and deeply and painfully,” said Lynch.
Maher, for his part, said that Lynch should’ve taken a page from one of the greatest movie presidents: Harrison Ford’s President James Marshall in Air Force One.
“How about saying, ‘I’m the attorney general, I’m looking into your wife, I’m about to indict her—or not, ‘Get off my plane.’ Like Harrison Ford: Get off my plane!” said Maher. “And to spend 30 minutes? That’s a long time to be talking about your grandchildren.”