HBO host Bill Maher said Friday that President TrumpDonald John TrumpEx-White House counsel interviewed Whitaker about joining Trump's legal team: report Flake slams Trump for doubting Arizona vote count: No evidence of 'electoral corruption' Comey talked about sensitive FBI matters on personal email: report MORE crossed a “red line” by appointing Matthew Whitaker as acting attorney general.
“When you start putting the top cop in the country as just a stooge, just the guy who’s there to do the bidding of the supreme leader, that’s the slow-moving coup,” Maher said during an interview with veteran journalist Bob Woodward.
Trump tapped Whitaker to serve as former Attorney General Jeff SessionsJefferson (Jeff) Beauregard SessionsEx-White House counsel interviewed Whitaker about joining Trump's legal team: report Flake: Whitaker shouldn't oversee Mueller probe FBI investigating Florida company Trump's acting AG was involved in: report MORE's temporary replacement after Sessions resigned at the president's request on Wednesday. Whitaker served as Sessions’s chief of staff at the Justice Department.
Trump also announced that Whitaker would oversee special counsel Robert MuellerRobert Swan MuellerSasse: US should applaud choice of Mueller to lead Russia probe MORE's Russia investigation, which has been supervised by Deputy Attorney General Rod RosensteinRod Jay RosensteinFlake: Whitaker shouldn't oversee Mueller probe Rosenstein calls Whitaker 'superb' choice for acting AG: report Collins reiterates call for legislation to protect Mueller investigation MORE since Sessions recused himself early last year due to his work on Trump's campaign.
Trump on Friday said he hasn’t asked Whitaker about Mueller’s investigation, which Whitaker has criticized publicly and now oversees.
“Boy, does he love him some Donald Trump,” Maher said of Whitaker during his monologue.
Everything that Whitaker has written resembles “Trump’s unhinged narrative,” the host said.
“He wrote an op-ed which said the Mueller investigation goes too far, he wants to indict Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonComey talked about sensitive FBI matters on personal email: report Pipe bomb suspect indicted on charges of using weapons of mass destruction With Matthew Whitaker playing Roy Cohn, DOJ could be Trump’s personal law firm MORE,” Maher said. “He’s so far up Trump’s ass [Fox News host Sean] Hannity had to scoot over.”
The president praised Whitaker as a “very well-respected man in the law enforcement community," but claimed he does not know him personally.
"I didn't speak to Matt WhitakerMatthew G WhitakerBill Maher: Trump crossed a ‘red line’ with Whitaker appointment Ex-White House counsel interviewed Whitaker about joining Trump's legal team: report Rosenstein calls Whitaker 'superb' choice for acting AG: report MORE about it. I don't know Matt Whitaker," Trump said before departing the White House for a trip to Paris.
Whitaker has reportedly visited the Oval Office a dozen times.
Trump also said during an Oct. 11 interview with Fox News that Whitaker was a “great guy,” stating, “I mean, I know Matt Whitaker.”
Former White House counsel Don McGahn reportedly interviewed Whitaker, the former U.S. attorney from Iowa, about joining Trump’s legal team last year.