Rodner Figueroa was fired from Univision after comments he made about Michelle Obama on Wednesday’s episode of El Gordo y la Flaca.
Discussing makeup artist Paolo Ballesteros, who earned Internet notoriety for transforming himself into everyone from Kim Kardashian to Dakota Johnson to the First Lady, Figueroa said, “Well, watch out, you know that Michelle Obama looks like she’s from the cast of Planet of the Apes, the movie.”
His cohosts tried to save the situation, with Lili Estefan asking him, “What are you saying?” and Raul de Molina adding that he thought Obama was very attractive.
Figueroa’s termination was announced the next day.
In a statement translated by CNN, the Emmy Award-winning host alleged that the White House had a direct hand in his firing.
Figueroa apologized, saying that there was “no excuse” to say something “that could be interpreted as offensive or racist during these volatile times we’re living in.”
He also insisted that his comments were intended as a criticism of Ballesteros’s work and made sure to highlight that he had “openly voted” for Barack Obama twice.
“Yesterday during our entertainment program El Gordo y la Flaca, Rodner Figueroa made comments regarding First Lady Michelle Obama that were completely reprehensible and in no way reflect Univision’s values or views,” said Univision in a statement released to CNN. “As a result, Mr. Figueroa was immediately terminated.”