Bill Maher Defends Booking Milo On His Show As Fellow Panelist Refuses To Appear

Chase Stephens,

Breitbart editor Milo Yiannopoulos has already stirred up controversy on an upcoming episode of HBO’s Real Time with Bill Maher before even appearing on it. 

Jeremy Scahill, a journalist and co-founder of The Intercept, who is a regular guest on Maher’s show, canceled his booking as a panelist on the episode citing his moral objections to Yiannopoulos. 

milonmaher_small Bill Maher Defends Booking Milo On His Show As Fellow Panelist Refuses To Appear Politics

In a tweet, Scahill wrote that Milo “has ample venues to spew his hateful diatribes,” adding:

“There is no value in debating him. Appearing on Real Time will provide Yiannopoulos with a large, important platform to openly advocate his racist, anti-immigrant campaign. …  Yiannopoulos’s appearance could also be used to incite violence against immigrants, transgender people, and others at a time when the Trump Administration is already seeking to formalize a war against some of the most vulnerable people in our society. … I cannot participate in an event that will give a platform to such a person.”

Maher addressed Scahill’s assertion that he is anti-Muslim and noted that, “Liberals will continue to lose elections as long as they follow the example of people like Mr. Scahill”:

My comments on Islam have never veered into vitriol. Liberals will continue to lose elections as long as they follow the example of people like Mr. Scahill whose views veer into fantasy and away from bedrock liberal principles like equality of women, respect for minorities, separation of religion and state, and free speech. If Mr. Yiannopoulos is indeed the monster Scahill claims — and he might be — nothing could serve the liberal cause better than having him exposed on Friday night.

The episode is scheduled to air on Friday at 7pm on HBO. Scahill’s replacement on the panel will be MSNBC terrorism analyst Malcolm Nance. 

As EW pointed out,

Scahill isn’t the first person to take issue with the way Maher discusses Muslims. During one episode, Ben Affleck attacked the host and panelist Sam Harris for their “racist” comments about the religion. (Harris called Islam “the mother lode of bad ideas.”)


From Fox News:

While conservative provocateur Milo Yiannopoulos insulted comics Lena Dunham, Leslie Jones, Amy Schumer and Sarah Silverman, his appearance on HBO’s “Real Time with Bill Maher” was relatively tame — at least until the television cameras were turned off.

It was later, during an online-only “Overtime” segment of Maher’s Friday night show, that two of Maher’s three panelists hurled expletives at the Breitbart News senior editor.

Maher’s booking of Yiannopoulos, author of the upcoming book “Dangerous,” drew attention earlier this week when journalist Jeremy Scahill backed out of the show because of his “hateful diatribes.” The conservative gadfly has become a lightning rod; his planned speech at the University of California, Berkeley, was cancelled earlier this month when protests erupted.

Maher, a free speech advocate, told Yiannopoulos that he thought he was “colossally wrong” on most issues, “but if I barred everyone from the show who I thought was colossally wrong, I would be talking to myself.”

Yiannopoulos called Maher his “favorite liberal” and directed most of his ire at female comedians.

“Your side has gone insane,” he said. “The Democrats are the party of Lena Dunham. These people are hideous, mental people. The more the American people see of Lena Dunham, the fewer votes the Democratic Party is going to get.”

Responded Maher about the “Girls” creator: “Let’s not pick on fellow HBO stars.”

The Breitbart editor said Schumer and Silverman “used to be funny before they contracted feminism.” After the subject was brought up by Maher, he renewed hostilities with Jones that had begun with his review of the “Ghostbusters” film. Yiannopoulos’ Twitter account was suspended last year after a series of racially insensitive tweets were directed at Jones, who is black.

On Maher’s show, he called Jones “barely literate.”

Still, the interview segment featured few harsh exchanges with Maher, and Yiannopoulos was not included in a panel discussion that featured comedian Larry Wilmore, author and counterterrorism expert Malcolm Nance and U.S. Rep. Jack Kingston, a Georgia Republican. But online, Yiannopoulos joined the other three to answer questions from viewers.

That’s when things got interesting.

The starting-off point was when Yiannopoulos defended his criticism of a transgender person and saying, without offering evidence, that transgender people were involved in a disproportionate number of sex crimes. Wilborn objected, saying that reminded him of the attitudes people directed at gays and blacks to demonize them in society. He noted that for a long time, homosexuality was considered a disorder.

“Maybe it is,” said Yiannopoulos, who is gay.

“Maybe you are,” Wilborn said, “But most homosexuals are not.”

Nance observed that Yiannopoulos seemed confused about who and what he was. When Maher tried to referee, Yiannopoulos said that he always seemed to have “awful” people on the show, “who are so stupid.”

That’s when Wilmore exploded, telling Yiannopoulos to “go f— yourself.” Maher defended Nance, telling Yiannopoulos that “this guy has done things that allow you to” live.

When the oddity of an openly gay man being seen as a leader of the alt-right movement was pointed out, Yiannopoulos said that “the worst people on the far left and far right all hate me.”

Retorted Wilmore: “I think you’re leaving out a lot of people.”

Nance added another expletive when the Breitbart editor said he had no problems with the issue of President Donald Trump and ties to Russian, profanely dismissing him because he was not an American. Yiannopoulos is British.

It stopped there. Kingston declined a chance to be the third panelist to swear at Yiannopoulos.