Outspoken HBO late-night host Bill Maher quickly came under fire on Friday night after using a racial slur in an interview with Republican Sen. Ben Sasse of Nebraska during his "Real Time" show, according to the New York Times.
The incident occurred as the two were discussing maturity and adolescence in the framework that some adults in California still dress up for Halloween.
When Sasse said this didn't happen in his state, Maher replied, "I've got to get to Nebraska more."
Sasse added, "You're welcome. We'd love to have you work in the fields with us."
Maher said, "Work in the fields? Senator, I'm a house n*****r. No, it's a joke.
The distasteful joke was met with mixed reaction. Some audience members groaned while others clapped. Neither Sasse nor Maher addressed the comments further and the conversation continued to other topics.
The slur wasn't censored when the show rebroadcast at midnight.
Maher's remarks ignited calls for his firing.
Sasse later seemingly defended Maher's remarks, citing the First Amendment.