Secret Service Clears John Mulaney After SNL Joke About Assassinating the President

In a sentence I didn't see myself writing in 2021, John Mulaney can now breathe a sigh of relief [...]

In a sentence I didn't see myself writing in 2021, John Mulaney can now breathe a sigh of relief now that he's no longer under the microscope from the Secret Service. This all started because of a joke Mulaney made back in December during his February 2020 appearance on Saturday Night Live, a joke that came up during his opening monologue and had him comparing at the time President Donald Trump to Caesar, specifically regarding Caesar's assassination at the hands of his senators. As of Tuesday though the Associated Press reported that the investigation that opened last March concluded in December, and said that Mulaney was not a threat (via EW).

For context, here's the joke from Mulaney's monologue. "Leap Year began in the year 45 B.C. under Julius Caesar," Mulaney said. "This is true. He started the Leap Year in order to correct the calendar and we still do it to this day. Another thing that happened under Julius Caesar was he was such a powerful maniac that all the senators grabbed knives and they stabbed him to death. That'd be an interesting thing if we brought that back now. I asked my lawyer if I could make that joke and he said, 'Lemme call another lawyer.' And that lawyer said yes."

Mulaney revealed what happened afterward during an appearance on Jimmy Kimmel Live, telling Kimmel that he was interviewed about the joke by the Secret Service, and while it's funny now it wasn't exactly so funny then.

"I guess they opened a file on me because of the joke, and I have to say, am I stoked there's a file open on me? Absolutely. Did I enjoy it in the moment? Not so much. But the person vetting me was very understanding that the joke had nothing to do with Donald Trump because it was an elliptical reference to him," Mulaney said to Kimmel. "I didn't say anything about him. In terms of risk assessment, no one who's ever looked at me thought I registered above a one."

The good news is that's been put to bed now, so Mulaney and the Secret Service can both move onto other things.