MSNBC Holds Halperin Accountable For Inexcusable Comments

Blog ››› ››› JEREMY HOLDEN

MSNBC rightly placed its senior political analyst Mark Halperin on indefinite suspension Thursday after the Time editor-at-large inexcusably called President Obama a "dick." This is how responsible news organizations behave.

While Halperin has apologized for his comments, it is simply unacceptable to call the president of the United States -- or any president -- a dick.

In recent months, MSNBC has rightfully sanctioned its contributors for unacceptable comments.

When Ed Schultz called conservative commentator Laura Ingraham a "slut" on his radio show, MSNBC made clear that those comments were unacceptable and placed the popular host on leave for a week.

When it was disclosed that Keith Olbermann made political contributions that MSNBC deemed inappropriate, Olbermann was suspended indefinitely.

MSNBC's response to unacceptable rhetoric is how responsible news organizations behave. Responsible news organizations hold people accountable.


Several readers have pointed out to us that Joe Scarborough was also suspended for political contributions.


This post was not intended to compare political contributions to hateful rhetoric. It was to show that actual news networks have systems of accountability when they determine their employees have crossed the network's line.

Mark Halperin
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