Living up on his promise from last week to show a clip each Friday, Maher presented the old footage. O'Donnell, a devout Catholic, was a frequent guest on Maher's show and also appeared regularly on television to push social conservatism.
Thanks to that early work, O'Donnell has a long trail of video that's surfaced in her race against Democrat Chris Coons for the open seat in Delaware. The most often cited is her 1996 MTV campaign against masturbation. TPM rounded up her greatest hits -- from complaining about AIDS funding to suggesting President Clinton plotted to murder Vince Foster -- in one handy video clip. Just today, a new clip surfaced of O'Donnell suggesting in 2003 she wanted to prevent people from having sex.
Both O'Donnell and Coons said in their first debate that old statements aren't weighing on voters' minds.
Maher said tonight that O'Donnell is "what people have been asking me about all week," as the audience in his Los Angeles studio cheered and applauded. He was referring to the clip he'd shown last Friday of O'Donnell saying on his show in October 1999 she had "dabbled into witchcraft."
Introducing that clip last week, Maher said, "I have 22 episodes, Christine. If you're watching, I created you, you need to come on this show. If you don't come on this show I'm going to show a clip every week. I'm the only one who has them. I ordered them."
Maher tonight also showed a spoof clip he joked was from 1996, featuring Edie McClurg, Kato Kaelin and Christopher "Kid" Reid of Kid 'N' Play. Sporting goofy clothes, the group chatted with on O'Donnell impersonator. The fake O'Donnell mock-confessed that during a game of truth or dare, she "killed a Mexican."
After the spoof, Maher showed his panel a decorative Ten Commandments display that he said O'Donnell had given him years ago and which he still keeps in his office. "I've treasured it all these years," he said.
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Kudos to Think Progress for clipping the video again this week. Watch: