Stand-up comedian John Mulaney has revealed that he was investigated by the Secret Service after he made a joke that many assumed was a threat to Donald Trump.
Mulaney has hosted “Saturday Night Live” twice in 2020. He revealed the story about the investigation on Tuesday when he appeared on “Jimmy Kimmel Live.” He shared that he made the joke in question during his first hosting gig of 2020.
“In February, I did a joke that was not about Donald Trump,” Mulaney explained. “The joke was about how it was a leap year and the leap year was started by Julius Cesar to correct the calendar, and another thing that happened with Cesar was that he was stabbed to death by a bunch of senators because he went crazy. And I said that’s an interesting thing that can happen.”
Mulaney did not mention Trump’s name, but Trump supporters quickly came to the conclusion that he was hinting at Trump. Not long after making the joke, he says he received a call from the Secret Service informing him that because of the joke they had opened an investigation.
“What also happened was, there’s a service that operates for the president and it’s a secret. They’re a secret service and they… they investigated me and I guess they opened a file on me because of the joke,” Mulaney explained. “Am I stoked that there’s a file open on me? Absolutely. Did I enjoy it at the moment? Not so much.”
He adds that the agents that he spoke with were pretty understanding that he was in no way a threat to anyone.
“They were very nice in the interview,” he told the Kimmel. “In terms of risk assessment, no one that’s ever looked at me thought I registered above a one.”
Mulaney says that he was asked if there was anything else such as postings about Trump online that they would find during the investigation. They specifically asked about “rants and manifestos.”
“I said no, I have bad writing habits,” he said. “I could never pound out a manifesto.”
Mulaney shares that he was cleared by the Secret Service, but fears that he didn’t help his case by not sharing that he and his wife rented an apartment in D.C. around the time he made the joke because his wife was working on a project at the Smithsonian there.
“After telling the Secret Service that they had nothing to worry about, that I had leased an apartment for one year in Washington D.C.,” he joked. “And that apartment was across the street from the Secret Service building. So, it had a planned vibe to it.”