*Joan Rivers may have stepped out of line when she called First Lady Michelle Obama Blackie-O… Yeah she said it.

But she didn’t say it … at least publicly … when she wanted to.

She said she left the joke by the wayside in her stand-up comedy routine because she feared she’d be called a racist.

We learned this when she was on the Howard Stern radio show. She said, “We used to have Jackie O now we have Blackie O!”

Rivers then attempted to make up for the seemingly questionable comment saying:

“I thought it was a funny complimentary joke when she first came (to the White House),” the 77-year-old comedienne told Stern. “I think it’s an adorable joke… I thought it was a compliment!”

However, everyone was not as impressed. Robyn Quivers laughed a little, then proceeded to question the comedienne about her real motive.

“Where’s the compliment in that? I’m looking and looking, I’m trying to find it,” Quivers asked Joan.

“They said you can’t say that,” Joan admitted.

Listen to the conversation here: