In an unexpected turn of events: Joe Exotic wants to work with his arch-nemesis, Carole Baskin.
Earlier this month, Exotic, who is currently serving 22 years behind bars in Texas for his 2017 murder-for-hire scheme against Carole and for various wildlife laws violations, received support from the 59-year-old and her husband Howard Baskin for his potential pardon.
“If Joe were to come out and say, ‘I now know what I did was wrong and I want to help. I would like to support passage of the Big Cat Public Safety Act and stop this breeding.’ If he were to do that, it might position him in a positive way for a pardon,” Howard told the Mirror earlier this month. “And frankly, I might be willing to go and urge at least a reduction in his sentence.”
In a new interview, the titular Tiger King star, 58, says he will accept the Big Cat Rescue CEO's offer to advocate for his early release from prison.
"It is time for Carole and Howard to put up or shut the hell up because I'm accepting their offer," Exotic told Entertainment Tonight. "And I'm gonna take it one step further than that, OK? It is time to get on the phone to President Biden or whoever they need to that they've got in their little financial pocket and say, 'Hey, Joe is willing to support a big cat bill to help protect cats in America from being exploited. But we need to keep our end of the deal and get Joe a pardon because this wasn't really about murder for hire or shooting five tigers—this was about exploiting Joe to support Carole's agenda.' So, there's the offer on the table, all right?"
"The way it's written is not gonna help anybody except PETA and Carole Baskin," Exotic claimed. "So, I'll testify in front of the Senate, I'll testify in front of the House, they want to end big cats in America and they want to end the exploitation of them, I'm the man to do it. But it's time to get an attorney general down here and listen to the evidence that I have to prove I'm innocent and get me the hell out of here. And they've got my support. Other than that, they need to stay the hell out of the news with all their crap just to get their name in the paper because I just called their bluff."
Still, Carole, standing by her offer, wants to know he'll keep his word.
"I wouldn't seek a reduced sentence for Joe based upon him just saying he'd help end cub handling," she told ET. "I think he'd say anything, but not actually do it. He'd have to actually work with authorities to bring all of his buddies to justice and work with legislators to end cub handling. Then, I'd want him to be rewarded for having done the right thing."
Photo: Netflix (2)