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MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough Suspended for Political Contributions

November 19, 2010

Following an example the network set with liberal host host Keith Olbermann, MSNBC has suspended conservative host Joe Scarborough for political contributions made while he has been at the network.

The decision comes after Politico uncovered eight previously unknown $500 contributions to friends and family members running for state and local offices. Scarborough has admitted to the donations. 

The donations violated a policy of parent company NBC, which bans political contributions by employees without specific permission from the network’s president.

His suspension will keep him off the program “Morning Joe” for two days.

“I recognize that I have a responsibility to honor the guidelines and conditions of my employment, and I regret that I failed to do so in this matter,” Scarborough said in a statement. “I apologize to MSNBC and to anyone who has been negatively affected by my actions.”

In that statement, Scarborough added that as soon as he was made aware of the donations he called network president Phil Griffin “and agreed with Phil’s immediate demand of a two-day suspension without pay.”

The donations, which stretch back as far as five years to 2005, are “all to Republican candidates to whom he was close who were running for state legislative seats in or near Scarborough’s hometown of Pensacola, Fla.,” Politico reports.

Politico initially uncovered five political donations by Scarborough, but when it contacted the morning host about them he discloses three more.

Griffin and MSNBC took similar action against host Keith Olbermann earlier this month when it was revealed he donated a total of $7,200 to three different Democratic candidates this election season.

But that suspension included much more drama. Originally Olbermann was suspended indefinitely without pay. That punishment was later reduced to two days and reports now suggest that MSNBC paid Olbermann for the suspended time.

Additionally, a recent article by Howard Kurtz in the Daily Best chronicled the days surrounding Olbermann’s suspension, in which Griffin at one point threatened to fire Olbermann and told him that the two were “at war.”

By all accounts, the Scarborough suspension was without incident.

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