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Whoops Goldberg began a segment explaining the prank he pulled on the Republican senator To Lindsay Graham expenses during a discussion on abortion rights and marriage equality with the press secretary Karin Jean-Pierre On The view on Thursday, September 22. After a commercial break, the moderator defended his comment. “That it’s a joke. Nothing more,” she explained.
The press secretary referred to Graham’s recent proposal for a national abortion ban and warned that such a bill would set a precedent for other problems. “This is not just an abortion. It will be at the wedding. She will be on birth control. It would depend on our privacy,” she said, before mentioning that the South Carolina senator had made controversial comments before introducing the bill. “Senator Graham had said — maybe about a month ago, early August — that he believed that when it comes to marriage, when it comes to abortion, the states should decide. So, Senator Graham, what has changed?’
Whoopi answered the question with a mockery at Graham’s expense. “Maybe he’ll get married. Do it fast because I know people are messing with our marriage rights,” she said. Although the co-host did not make any direct statements about the senator’s sexuality, some interpreted the comment as such. Editor at the Media Research Center and a conservative publication News hunters Nicholas Fondacaro accused Whoopi of “engaging in homophobic bigotry,” on Twitter. “It plays into the stain that Graham is imprisoned,” he wrote.
When the show returned from a commercial break, Whoopi explained that she wasn’t making a serious statement. “I was doing what I do as a comic. Sometimes I joke,” she said. “I just got a whole conversation about people not getting the joke. I mean, okay. I should probably never do this show again if it comes to that. It was a joke guys.
This isn’t the first time Whoopi has called out the Republican senator. When questioned by the High Court judge Ketanji Brown Jackson during her confirmation hearings, Whoopi said she should be “ashamed” of having voted to confirm her to the D.C. Court of Appeals in the past.
The comedian was embroiled in controversy back in February when she was called upon to make a comment the view where she said the Holocaust “wasn’t about race.” In the next episode, she apologized and appointed the CEO of the Anti-Defamation League Jonathan Greenblatt to explain why such comments are harmful. However, she was suspended for two weeks from the show. Upon her return, she thanked those who had helped educate her during her time away. “I listened to everything everyone had to say and I was very grateful. I hope that the important conversations continue to happen, because we will continue to have difficult conversations,” she said at the time.