Senator Al Franken was originally supposed to appear on HBO’s Real Time With Bill Maher back in June, but when Maher uttered the N-word on-air, Franken subsequently canceled his appearance. He will now be a guest, though, on this Friday’s episode, the network revealed Wednesday.
Maher said the N-word during an interview with Nebraska Senator Ben Sasse on a June episode of the show. When Maher said he needed to go to Nebraska more, Sasse responded, “We’d love to have you work in the fields with us.” Maher then said, “Work in the fields? Senator, I’m a house n—.”
HBO responded by calling Maher’s use of the word “completely inexcusable and tasteless” and Maher himself apologized, saying, “I regret the word I used in the banter of a live moment. The word was offensive and I regret saying it and am very sorry.”
Franken then canceled his appearance on the show with a statement via his spokesperson: “Senator Franken believes that what Bill Maher said was inappropriate and offensive, which is why he made the decision not to appear on the next episode of Real Time. He was glad to see Bill, who the Senator considers to be a good friend, apologize and express sincere regret for his comment.”
The episode featuring Franken will air Friday, Aug. 18 at 10 p.m. ET on HBO.