HBO “Real Time” host Bill Maher told CNN’s Jake Tapper on Tuesday he agrees with Hillary Clinton’s assessment of what went wrong with her 2016 presidential bid, arguing, “I think we thought we were further along on the women issue that we are, and I don't think we are”
“I don’t think she’s wrong,” Maher said of Clinton’s election autopsy. The former democratic candidate told CNN’s Christiane Amanpour she took personal responsibility for her campaign’s failure, but noted both Russian interference and FBI Director James Comey's letter contributed to her loss.
“The ball rolled through her legs,” Maher continued. “Having said that, she’s right about the letter.”
“I don’t understand why Director Comey didn’t release both,” Maher said, referring to the FBI’s ongoing investigation into Trump campaign official’s potential collusion with Russian operatives. “You know, he seemed to be in a tough place, I get it. He had to say something, he thought, eleven days before the election. Why not say that and then also mention the stuff about Russia with Donald Trump? That seemed to be, to me, the fair way to handle it.”
Maher agreed with Clinton’s assertion that misogyny also played a role in her loss.
“Of course, absolutely,” Maher said of that analysis. “I think we learned a lot about this country, I think we’re learning more about it as we watch what’s going on with Fox News everyday.”
Noting the circumstances surrounding several high profile ousters at Fox News are “remarkable,” Tapper pressed Maher on whether he thought there was a “misogynistic problem in American corporate culture.”
“Not just corporate culture,” Maher acknowledged. “I think race is more on the surface, and people talk about it, and there’s movements like Black Lives Matter and I’m glad there are. But I think we thought we were further along on the women issue than we are, and I don't think we are.”
“Pakistan has had a woman leader,” Maher noted.
The “Real Time” host then gave a detailed retrospective on 2016, arguing the Democrats should “learn some of the important lessons from 2016, like have a message. ‘At least we’re not crazy’ didn’t work. I think we need something more.” He also said the party should “ease up on the identity politics” and stop obsessing “about Halloween costumes and the name of the Washington Redskins.”
Turning back to his defense of Clinton, Maher noted “she was not a great candidate, I think she acknowledges that herself.”
“Having said that … those people who said, ‘well she was the lesser of two evils, and a pox on both your houses,’ now we have 100 days of empirical evidence of what a Trump presidency looks like,” Maher added. “They should be ashamed of themselves.”
Watch the video below, via CNN: