'Tiger King': Joe Exotic Sent Daily Videos to Donald Trump During 2016 Election Season

The connection between Joe Exotic and President Donald Trump goes back further than some may have realized. Exotic, whose real name is Joseph Allen Maldonado-Passage, is currently serving a 22-year prison sentence for animal abuse as well as a murder-for-hire plot, both of which are explored in the wildly-popular Netflix series Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem, and Madness.

While the former private zoo owner has asked the president to pardon him from his sentence, it turns out Exotic had been communicating with him when he was still a candidate. On the YouTube channel JoeExoticTV, there are a series of videos that were sent to Trump on an almost daily basis back in 2016. Bouncing between 10 and 20 minutes in length, the clips feature Exotic strolling the grounds of his private zoo, sending a message out to "all the politicians." He continued the trend in late 2019 and early 2020, which were aimed more specifically at Trump.

Along with his thoughts on politics, they all feature a number of talking points that are covered at length in the seven-part docuseries — including the arson fire in his studio, his own write-in campaign, of course, Carole Baskin.

More recently, Exotic has asked the 45th president to excuse the 17 federal charges of animal abuse and two counts of murder-for-hire he's currently serving time for. He's also filed a $94 million lawsuit against the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, as well as his former business partner Jeff Lowe and James Garretson who was a confidential informant for the prosecution in his case.

"This lawsuit has been filed in the name of justice," the statement by Exotic read. "The Trump Administration must be made aware of the overreach, perjury, abuse of power and the failure to uphold the Oath of their position which is truth and justice for all."

It concluded by stating that "I have been illegally charged with these crimes and the Trump Administration, the United States Department of Interior along with the Federal Wildlife service must be held accountable for what they have done to me, my parents and my family, along with my animals."

There's even a petition circulation calling from Trump to pardon Exotic for his crimes. The View co-host Meghan McCain even admitted on Thursday that she thought about signing it because he's become something of a "folk hero" for people, but ultimately decided not to.


Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem, and Madness is currently available to stream on Netflix.