MSNBC has suspended one of its senior political analysts indefinitely after he said he thought President Obama acted like “a dick” at recent press conference.
Mark Halperin, who is also Time magazine’s editor-at-large, made the comments on Thursday’s Morning Joe. At the time he joked that he thought the producers would have bleeped his remarks out. They did not.
Halperin later offered an on-air apology. “Joking aside, this is an absolute apology,” he said. “I shouldn’t have said it. I apologize to the president and the viewers who heard me say that.”
The apology wasn’t enough. A few hours later, MSNBC released a statement announcing Halperin’s suspension, along with a second statement from Halperin that reiterated his apology.
The NBC statement:
Mark Halperin’s comments this morning were completely inappropriate and unacceptable. We apologize to the President, The White House and all of our viewers. We strive for a high level of discourse and comments like these have no place on our air. Therefore, Mark will be suspended indefinitely from his role as an analyst.
I completely agree with everything in MSNBC’s statement about my remark. I believe that the step they are taking in response is totally appropriate. Again, I want to offer a heartfelt and profound apology to the President, to my MSNBC colleagues, and to the viewers. My remark was unacceptable, and I deeply regret it.
And the original quote that started it all: “”I thought he was kind of a dick yesterday,” Halperin said, referring to Obama’s press conference at the White House.