Did Olbermann violate NBC ethics code by contributing to Democrats?; Update: MSNBC suspends Olbermann “indefinitely without pay”

posted at 10:10 am on November 5, 2010 by Ed Morrissey

Would it shock anyone to know that Keith Olbermann donated thousands of dollars to three Democrats in the midterms?  Two House incumbents from Arizona and Jack Conway, the Senatorial candidate fro Kentucky who lost after running the notorious “Aqua Buddha” attack ad, received the maximum donation from Olbermann in the final days of the general election season, a fact discovered by Politico when reviewing FEC filings.  The donations violate NBC’s stated ethics code for its journalists, and it may apply even more since one of the recipients appeared on Countdown at the same time Olbermann made the donation:

MSNBC host Keith Olbermann made campaign contributions to two Arizona members of Congress and failed Kentucky Senate candidate Jack Conway ahead of Tuesday’s election — a potential violation of NBC’s ethics policies.

Olbermann, who acknowledged the contributions in a statement to POLITICO, made the maximum legal donations of $2,400 apiece to Conway and to Arizona Reps. Raul Grijalva and Gabrielle Giffords. He donated to the Arizona pair on Oct. 28 – the same day that Grijalva appeared as a guest on Olbermann’s “Countdown” show. Grijalva, a prominent liberal who was only declared a winner in his race Thursday night, was in a tight contest against tea party-backed candidate Ruth McClung when he appeared on Countdown – one of several appearances he made on the show.

NBC has a rule against employees contributing to political campaigns, and a wide range of news organizations prohibit political contributions – considering it a breach of journalistic independence to contribute to the candidates they cover.

Three years ago, MSNBC stated categorically that the rule applies to both the traditional NBC network and its opinion cable network:

NBC and MSNBC TV require permission of the president of NBC News. (MSNBC.com is a joint venture of NBC Universal and Microsoft.)

“Anyone working for NBC News who takes part in civic or other outside activities may find that these activities jeopardize his or her standing as an impartial journalist because they may create the appearance of a conflict of interest.  Such activities may include participation in or contributions to political campaigns or groups that espouse controversial positions.  You should report any such potential conflicts in advance to, and obtain prior approval of, the President of NBC News or his designee.”

The question then becomes whether Steve Capus approved of Olbermann’s contributions, or whether he was asked at all about it.  The rule does allow NBC to decide on a case-by-case basis whether to enforce the ethics code or not.  If Capus gave the green light, then one has to wonder whether he has ever been asked about donating to Republicans in House and Senate races and whether he allowed those contributions or not.  If waivers only come for Democrats, then that speaks to NBC’s approach to politics in general, and not just MSNBC.

However, let’s not pretend that this somehow proves Olbermann’s bias.  Despite NBC’s insistence on calling Olbermann a news anchor, he’s one of the most obvious opinionaters in the cable news industry.  The disastrous election coverage at MSNBC helmed by Olbermann proved that beyond doubt for those few who ever doubted it.  And to be fair, Olbermann himself doesn’t seem terribly concerned about pretenses of objectivity or fairness.

That doesn’t mean that Olbermann and his network haven’t been hypocritical on this issue, however:

Olbermann, who has become of the most prominent liberal commentators on cable television, has been a critic of the political donations made by Fox News’ parent company, News Corp., which contributed $1 million each to a pair of organizations trying to defeat Democratic candidates.

MSNBC President Phil Griffin also tweaked rival network Fox over the contributions. “Show me an example of us fund-raising,” Griffin told The New York Times last month.

Well, putting Grijalva on while Olbermann makes contributions to his campaign may not quite be fundraising, but the failure to disclose it at the time does look questionable in terms of journalistic ethics.  On MSNBC, that’s hardly news, either.

Update: Just to make my point clearer — there seems to be some confusion about it in the comments — I don’t think that Olbermann’s contributions mean too much on their own.  We all know from watching his broadcasts that he dislikes Republicans and cheerleads for Democrats, so these contributions do nothing for his credibility in any direction.  The question here is whether NBC will hold MSNBC to its ethical standards, and the hypocrisy of shrieking about Fox’s contributions while donating his own.

Update II: Jonah Goldberg offers some wisdom:

So Olbermann gave money to some Democratic candidates. Ostensibly the rules against this are intended to prevent journalists from giving the appearance of bias. Whether or not such rules make sense for actual reporters, such rules are silly for someone like Olbermann. Does anybody, and I mean anybody, suddenly trust Olbermann’s opinion less because of this news? I’m waiting. Does anyone think he’s less biased? More biased? Un-biased?

Second, the larger problem with these kinds of rules is that they do little to prevent media bias and a great deal to hide an important form of evidence of it. Banning liberal journalists from giving money doesn’t prevent them from being liberal, it just gives them a bit more plausibility when they deny it. Now, I can see the argument that someone who makes a donation would be more interested in protecting their investment, as it were. So I don’t think the policy is completely misguided. But at a certain level banning donations is like NPR barring staff from attending the Jon Stewart rally. It doesn’t fool anyone, but gives the accused a lawyerly rebuttal to accurate accusations.

Wouldn’t it be better to check Open Secrets to see where the journalists put their money?  And frankly, wouldn’t that be utterly redundant in Olbermann’s case?

Update III: Looks like Olbermann didn’t get permission after all:

MSNBC president Phil Griffin released the following statement Friday following the news that Keith Olbermann had donated to three Democratic candidates this election cycle:

“I became aware of Keith’s political contributions late last night. Mindful of NBC News policy and standards, I have suspended him indefinitely without pay.”

I’d be surprised if it lasts longer than the weekend, but it looks as though MSNBC felt it had to act.

Update IV: The more I think about this, the more ridiculous it gets.  MSNBC offers the most ridiculously biased televion coverage of politics possible, crowning it with Election Night coverage that had people wondering if NBC needed to hire grief and anger counseling for the entire on-air staff.  And now, because Olbermann contributed to three Democrats last month, suddenly Griffin suspends him because “these activities jeopardize his or her standing as an impartial journalist because they may create the appearance of a conflict of interest”?

For this, Griffin gets the Captain Louis Renault Award for his shock, shock! at finding that Olbermann may have jeopardized his standing as an impartial journalist:


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NBC has an ethics code? who knew?

Willie on November 5, 2010 at 10:55 AM

A selectively enforced and ultimately meaningless ethical code.

Don’t be too hard on Ann, folks. I think she has as little respect for Queef as most of us do. I and most of my fellow commentators here believe that Olberdouche engaged in violations of NBC’s “ethical code” (and yes, those are mocking quotes) while she does not. In the end, the future of our republic doesn’t turn on such questions.

gryphon202 on November 5, 2010 at 10:58 AM

The MSNBC Ethics Code applies to “journalists”. Olberman is a gossipist.

paulsur on November 5, 2010 at 10:54 AM

He is referred to as a “Host” on the MSNBC website.

Clown nose on …clown nose off.

Baxter Greene on November 5, 2010 at 10:58 AM

Defending him didn’t work, so now you’re mocking him.

Get a backbone, or think before type.

fogw on November 5, 2010 at 10:54 AM

I can’t stand the guy. Never have watched his show and know him only via U-TUBES on blogs.

Just because I don’t agree, in principle, with you guys on this one doesn’t mean that I’m a supporter of KO. You kidding me?

The only person making him look right now is Ed Shultz, who I think is going to stroke out on TV from foaming at the mouth.

AnninCA on November 5, 2010 at 10:59 AM

I would guess they will point out that Keith’s show/role is not covered under that clause. He isn’t even asked to appear impartial, so obviously, that rule wouldn’t apply to him.

AnninCA on November 5, 2010 at 10:57 AM

If the clause doesn’t specifically note an exception for certain shows, there isn’t an exception there.

“Anyone working for NBC News who takes part in civic or other outside activities may find that these activities jeopardize his or her standing as an impartial journalist because they may create the appearance of a conflict of interest. Such activities may include participation in or contributions to political campaigns or groups that espouse controversial positions. You should report any such potential conflicts in advance to, and obtain prior approval of, the President of NBC News or his designee.”

Keith Olbermann works for NBC News. The ethics code goes out of its way to state that all programming on MSNBC is coverd as well. Your logical contortions are painful to watch.

gryphon202 on November 5, 2010 at 10:59 AM

It’s confusing, I suppose. There are news-oriented entertainment shows on all the channels. But those aren’t the news people.

AnninCA on November 5, 2010 at 11:00 AM

may

There is the loophole, folks.

MAY …. NBC doesn’t care who he gives money to. This is about on par with the Palin Twitter story. :)

(OK, now throw those tomatoes!)

AnninCA on November 5, 2010 at 11:02 AM

It’s confusing, I suppose. There are news-oriented entertainment shows on all the channels. But those aren’t the news people.

AnninCA on November 5, 2010 at 11:00 AM

According to the NBC ethics code they are. Opinion can be found in newspapers, too. It just belongs on the editorial page. That doesn’t mean it’s not “news.” It wouldn’t be in a newspaper if it wasn’t news. Not hard news, no, but still news as far as Keith Olbermann works for “NBC News.” Their news division, get it?

gryphon202 on November 5, 2010 at 11:03 AM

What issue? This is simply “who they are”.

My collie says:

The hallmark of a liberal is to pass legislation and/or a code of ethics, and then make absolutely certain that no one EVER enforces it.

CyberCipher on November 5, 2010 at 11:04 AM

What issue? This is simply “who they are”.

My collie says:

The hallmark of a liberal is to pass legislation and/or a code of ethics, and then make absolutely certain that no one EVER enforces it.

CyberCipher on November 5, 2010 at 11:04 AM

There is no “issue” here, CC. It’s a dog-bites-man story, but it’s still fun to argue. ;)

gryphon202 on November 5, 2010 at 11:06 AM

and the hypocrisy of shrieking about Fox’s contributions while donating his own.

This hypocrisy is so out of hand on the left! They don’t even be able to see it.

petunia on November 5, 2010 at 11:07 AM

Just because I don’t agree, in principle, with you guys on this one doesn’t mean that I’m a supporter of KO. You kidding me?

AnninCA on November 5, 2010 at 10:59 AM

In my view, disagreeing with “us” while agreeing in principle with Olbermann, puts you in his camp. Personally I could not stomach coming to that sleazeball’s defense on any issue. He’s a disgrace to journalism and humanity.

But if you have to urge to pipe up in his defense, it’s a free country.

fogw on November 5, 2010 at 11:09 AM

Olbermann has a jones for liberals and democrats? Whodathunkit?

This violation is like adultery laws…they are on the books, but no one enforces them and there is no penalty for it. Only official disapproval.

It’s not like Olbermann maintains any pretense of objectivity.

What Olbermann should be fired over is his inability to attract an audience. If I were a shareholder, I’m thinking a derivative lawsuit is in order.

ObjectionSustained on November 5, 2010 at 11:11 AM

But if you have to urge to pipe up in his defense, it’s a free country.

fogw on November 5, 2010 at 11:09 AM

“He didn’t violate NBC’s ethics code” doesn’t seem like much of a defense when you consider the kinds of people that run NBC.

gryphon202 on November 5, 2010 at 11:11 AM

Dr Evil on November 5, 2010 at 11:13 AM

Where I come from we call that “protection money.”

gryphon202 on November 5, 2010 at 11:14 AM

Comcast Corp $11,254,013 56% 42%

Gave 56% to Democrats and 42% to Republicans.

Dr Evil on November 5, 2010 at 11:14 AM

Leave KO alone. He and Matthews represent the left without makeup. They and their ideas are repulsive and need to be seen as such.

Don L on November 5, 2010 at 11:16 AM

Since when have the folks at NBC and MSNBC been “impartial journalists”?

GarandFan on November 5, 2010 at 11:17 AM

GE donated 51% to Democrats and 48% to Republicans, the parent company of NBCU.

Dr Evil on November 5, 2010 at 11:13 AM

Where I come from we call that “protection money.”

gryphon202 on November 5, 2010 at 11:14 AM

With the generic polls leading up to the elections giving the Republicans a 10-15 point edge, you would think the brass at GE would have hedged their bets and put more money on the GOP.

But, on the other hand, they gave Olberdouche a $7 million dollar contract, so it’s pretty obvious they aren’t smart with their investments. And they don’t have to be, as long as Baracky and friends have bailout money.

fogw on November 5, 2010 at 11:20 AM

If you look at the list on Open Secrets Org, it shows that Walmart gives more to Republicans, which explains why they are always targeted by Democrats, and bashed by the Liberal media….it’s a shakedown.

Dr Evil on November 5, 2010 at 11:20 AM

It’s confusing, I suppose. There are news-oriented entertainment shows on all the channels. But those aren’t the news people.

AnninCA on November 5, 2010 at 11:00 AM

The major difference is NBC until now has been unwilling to either crap or get off the pot as far as defining what Keith Olbermann is in their world of news.

If there’s a breaking story on Fox, like Tuesday’s election results coming in, show hosts like Hannity and O’Reilly are shunted to the side (Glenn Beck was joking the next morning on his radio show that Fox changed the card locks on the building Tuesday night so he couldn’t get in). In contrast, MSNBC will wants to treat Olbermann as if he’s a regular news anchor in situations like Tuesday — he and the rest of the group may have been acting like a bunch of snarky teen-agers, but when the results came in, they didn’t cut away from Keith to let someone else announce the latest totals.

If NBC wants to tout Keith Olbermann as a liberal commentator, then do it already. The game they’re playing right now is like Jon Stewart’s “clown nose on, clown nose off” bit on the Daily Show — Olby’s a newsman when it suits the situation, and a commentator when it does not. Commentator Keith Olbermann can donate all the cash he wants to Democratic candidates, but based on NBC’s journalistic code of ethics, newsman Keith Olbermann shouldn’t be able to, or at the very least, should be required to make full disclosure of his contributions, especially when he’s interviewing someone whose campaign he donated to in the current election cycle.

jon1979 on November 5, 2010 at 11:25 AM

But, on the other hand, they gave Olberdouche a $7 million dollar contract, so it’s pretty obvious they aren’t smart with their investments. And they don’t have to be, as long as Baracky and friends have bailout money.

fogw on November 5, 2010 at 11:20 AM

Yes but it’s a New Day In America, and the corporate gravy train has come to a dead stop. The Problem with some of these corporations, they have really crappy CEOs they need to dump them. I would bet dollars to doughnuts, they are already trying to slide up to the new Congress members coming into office in January. If those people take the corporate bait, they are going to find themselves voted back out of office…There is a huge segment of the population that get’s it now, and they voted NO to corporatism and statism.

It seems to me John Boehner gets it, Barack Obama not so much, they will try and go around the Will Of The People. If he and the rest of the Progressives in Congress try it…watch for Congressional investigations to get into full swing.

Dr Evil on November 5, 2010 at 11:27 AM

If the CEOS at the networks and the CEOS of the Parent Companies were any good at their jobs they would know they are trailing trends and they could save themselves huge swathes of money in the way of political donations. The Beta Male doesn’t have a long shelf life.

America Loves Manly Men Not Metrosexual Emos

If the NBCU networks are towing the company line, including with political donations, they are lagging behind public sentiment big time.

Any marketer could come in and tell these companies, and networks CEOS what’s trending, and what’s not working they could improve their ratings and profits. Stop worrying about Blue or Red, and start paying attention to GREEN. So why doesn’t GE or Comcast hire an expert and stop letting Griffin use MSNBC as some kind of experimental rehab laboratory? Every time Griffin re brands the network – last time lame Lean Forward, it’s nothing more than trying to rehab the brand, but he doesn’t rehab his talent.

Dr Evil on November 5, 2010 at 11:40 AM

“NBC ethics code”? Surely you jest. No controlling legal authority, says Al Gore.

Western_Civ on November 5, 2010 at 11:42 AM

OCCUM’S RAZOR
KEEF did this knowing it would come out , so when comcast steps in and fires him he can claim this was the cause !
This makes him an ACLU darling and he and Sheehan launch an i pod cast talk show

ELMO Q on November 5, 2010 at 11:52 AM

If it hasn’t already been said, but probably has,…. NBC has an ethics code?

JimP on November 5, 2010 at 11:56 AM

Acutally this does matter because it shows MSNBC hypocrisy.

Now I do not care if MSNBC has a openly partisan news-opinion site. It obviously does. And it caters to that tiny minority of viewers who want to get fired up by Olbermann and Maddow each night. But don’t pretend it is anything but that.

Fox is partisan too. But at least Fox makes an effort to put opposing voices on. CNN and the TV Networks do not make the same effort in that as Fox does.

Mr. Joe on November 5, 2010 at 12:00 PM

Ethics? lol I can’t believe anyone is discussing ethics or think such a thing exists anywhere or by anyone.

fastestslug on November 5, 2010 at 12:01 PM

Sorry, I stopped after NBC ethics code. Hahaha.

Sadly, ethics rarely exist at all anymore, let alone at a place like NBC where money and viewers will always trump ehtics.

Ya, ya, I know Olby and viewers….

It really is sad how the word ethics has lost all meaning.

reaganaut on November 5, 2010 at 12:07 PM

AnninCA on November 5, 2010 at 10:57 AM

You know what? You’re correct. Like O’Reilly, Olby is an analyst/commentator so he’s paid to provide his opinion, not hard facts, as an actual journalist would.

I would like to hear him publicly state that he’s not actually a journalist, tho, before he gets the pass.

dogsoldier on November 5, 2010 at 12:07 PM

NBC has an ethics code? who knew?
Willie on November 5, 2010 at 10:55 AM

Actually it’s the OPPOSITE of an ethics code.

Bear in mind that NBC only imposed this rule after people started complaining about the fact that 90% of the alphabet networks’ donations went to Democrats, while only 80% of Fox News employee donations went to Democrats.

Of course the rule does absolutely nothing to reduce their overwhelming bias. Its only goal is to COVER UP their bias.

And that’s what Olberman was too stupid to do.

logis on November 5, 2010 at 12:23 PM

I just wonder how this story would resonate had Glenn Beck been exposed donating the maximum to three tea party candidates?

carbon_footprint on November 5, 2010 at 12:25 PM

The failed TV show host supported a failed KY candidate and two members in AZ against US law?

The two AZ members are supporters of breaking the US immigration laws by actively supporting illegals. What about the oath to support the constitution, the “non-living, non-breathing” contract our founding fathers gave us? They’re liberals? nevermind.

dthorny on November 5, 2010 at 12:28 PM

More interesting, I think, is the perjury olby committed when he stated he was a newsperson: He’s not….

But I doubt that Holder will prosecute him. He’s one of the chosen, after all

HBowmanMD on November 5, 2010 at 12:29 PM

Did Olbermann violate NBC ethics code by contributing to Democrats?

Do bears defecate in the woods?

chemman on November 5, 2010 at 12:33 PM

Well, in defense (partially) of Olbermann the timeline seems to indicate that he made the contribution after Grijalva appeared on his show.

SteveMG on November 5, 2010 at 10:20 AM

In addition to that, Olbermann contributed to Giffords on October 28. On October 29 he named her opponent, Jesse Kelly, as one of his “Worst People”.

KittyLowrey on November 5, 2010 at 12:39 PM

There are Ethics Rules at MSNBC! Who would have guessed?

JIMV on November 5, 2010 at 12:44 PM

The FEC filings for Olbermann’s contributions list an address that is a Mailboxes Etc. storefront in New York, and it also lists his occupation as a newscaster for NBC Television.”

KittyLowrey on November 5, 2010 at 12:48 PM

GE has to be terrified of losing all the goodies coming to them from Bammie’s administration, ie Cap and Trade bonanza, Obamacare database contracts, more bailouts as required, etc. I expect that their corporate giving will suddenly switch over to something more balanced.

Shouldn’t matter though. Any service they provide should be run through a public bidding process.

slickwillie2001 on November 5, 2010 at 1:26 PM

Olberman has that kind of disposable income?

Evil rich guy!1!!eleventy!!! tax him more!!

Scrappy on November 5, 2010 at 1:47 PM

Suspended indef. No pay. Just broke.

http://www.mediaite.com/tv/keith-olbermann-suspended-from-msnbc-indefinitely/

Jim708 on November 5, 2010 at 1:50 PM

Keith isn’t a journalist, so do the ethics rules still apply?

I really don’t see this as a big deal. Everyone knows he’s a flaming liberal. He’s a US citizen that has a right to donate to whoever he wants.

I personally don’t see how it’s any of his employer’s business who he donates to since he isn’t an actual reporter or journalist that needs to give the impression of impartiality. Granted, he broke his employer’s rule, so he must pay the price.

But beyond that, it’s no big deal.

ButterflyDragon on November 5, 2010 at 1:56 PM

He’s only being suspended so someone else can guest host his show for a while and get the ratings back up.

ButterflyDragon on November 5, 2010 at 1:58 PM

I know it’s immature but pardon me while I giggle.

katiejane on November 5, 2010 at 2:00 PM

Media Circus Favorite “Bathtub Boy” Leaves Ring

Christien on November 5, 2010 at 2:01 PM

It looks like MSNBC named Keith Olbermann “Worst Person in the World”.

scrubjay on November 5, 2010 at 2:02 PM

My problem with this story is that NBC’s policy refers to journalists. Let’s not kid ourselves here: Keith is not a journalist.

kvader on November 5, 2010 at 2:03 PM

“MSNBC suspends Olbermann “indefinitely without pay””

My guess is it’s simply a pretext for Herr Ubermann to now run for office.

locomotivebreath1901 on November 5, 2010 at 2:03 PM

Those FEC reports sure do make for an interesting read. You never know what you are going to find.

Done That on November 5, 2010 at 2:03 PM

I am shocked, shocked that there is bias at MSNBC!

I never thought I’d defend Keith Olbermann, but this suspension is a joke. MSNBC has made a point to be biased. Might as well suspend everyone there.

WannabeAnglican on November 5, 2010 at 2:04 PM

I love the comment in the HuffPo comment section that “maybe Keith will go start a real liberal network.” He’s unhappy with some of the commentary on MSNBC recently . . .

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

There are actually people who think MSNBC isn’t liberal enough . . . . WOW!

PastorJon on November 5, 2010 at 2:04 PM

He finally gave them an excuse to get rid of him, just like Juan. Lame but some excuse. Now if they can just get rid of the others they may be able to save the ship.

tjexcite on November 5, 2010 at 2:05 PM

This is delicious! Finally the check his ego was writing finally bounced!

Rndguy on November 5, 2010 at 2:09 PM

Olbermann: IT’S NOT POLICIES THAT WERE REJECTED, IT WAS FAILED COMMUNICATION SKILLS…

petefrt on November 5, 2010 at 2:09 PM

This just in: MSLSD reclassifies Keith Olberman as Puntit.

Fill the bathtub he’s wadin’ in.

ontherocks on November 5, 2010 at 2:12 PM

Do Fox anchors or reporters donate to politicians? I understand that News Corp does. But that’s not the same as the individual men and women covering the news.

hawksruleva on November 5, 2010 at 2:12 PM

What? So it’s NOT a breach of ethics to take an ideological stand, promote a particular party, upsale a particular party’s pundits and denigrate their opposition all the while promoting them on the air during political campaign season… But give them MONEY and that’s bad?! (Which just proves that MSNBC is liberal… talk is talk but power grabbing is what counts to them and money is power…)

Sorry, I’m with WannabeAnglican… Keith’s getting screwed here.

Skywise on November 5, 2010 at 2:12 PM

Making them live up to their own rules? Nice.

VerbumSap on November 5, 2010 at 2:13 PM

He finally gave them an excuse to get rid of him, just like Juan. tjexcite on November 5, 2010 at 2:05 PM

Unlike Juan, I don’t see FOX offering him a job!

tims472 on November 5, 2010 at 2:14 PM

I’m leaning toward the “excuse to get rid of him” view too.

He doesn’t get ratings, they pay him alot of money, and he’s a constant source of embarrassment.

Besides, now they can move what’s her face to 8:00pm and find a slot for Alan Grayson.

forest on November 5, 2010 at 2:15 PM

Making a leftist martyr out of Olbyflop is his wet dream come true. He’ll be the Che of Trump Palace.

Western_Civ on November 5, 2010 at 2:15 PM

Meanwhile, up in Heaven, Tim Russert is smiling.

kingsjester on November 5, 2010 at 2:17 PM

Sounds like Comcast is getting ready to try and force Keith out. Too bad, I’d love for them to keep MSNBC just as it is, but they must want the network to actually make them some money for a change…..

djm1992 on November 5, 2010 at 2:17 PM

Alan Grayson is available…

d1carter on November 5, 2010 at 2:19 PM

Buck up bathtub boy! Now you and Alan Grayson can pal around and share common philosophies!

csdeven on November 5, 2010 at 2:19 PM

I’m shocked he didn’t contribute to Grayson.
David Shuster and Dan Abrams could not be reached for comment.

lonestar1 on November 5, 2010 at 2:21 PM

I am absolutely shocked!!
Now is time to say, Unexpected.

barnone on November 5, 2010 at 2:21 PM

Better to show/know the devil than have him in disguise. In this case, it’s moot.

The last 3 years have been very revealing. The impertinence on the left has no limits…and it’s good that it has been exposed, or has revealed itself.

Most media are done.

Schadenfreude on November 5, 2010 at 2:24 PM

Next up, The Alan Grayson Show?

If you’re gonna have another trainwreck NBC, make it a good one…..again.

Lean forword, bend over, grab your ankles…..

dthorny on November 5, 2010 at 2:24 PM

Come on, the entire MSNBC broadcast is a campaign contribution to the Democratic Party.

Blue Collar Todd on November 5, 2010 at 2:25 PM

I’m sorry, but between this and Pelosi not knowing when to quit, I need one more thing..

More humping robots.

Brad on November 5, 2010 at 2:26 PM

Out of curiosity, does CNN and Fox have an ethics policy too? What is it?

fastestslug on November 5, 2010 at 2:27 PM

Fill the tub with some hot water. Going to be a long soak.

carbon_footprint on November 5, 2010 at 2:27 PM

We have a firing without Muslims or Jesse Jackson involved.

seven on November 5, 2010 at 2:27 PM

Guess he leaned forward a little to much and fell on his face.

Anyway, suspending him was the correct thing to do because the last thing MSNBC needs it to appear biased.

Rod on November 5, 2010 at 2:32 PM

They had to make room for Grayson.

Queen0fCups on November 5, 2010 at 2:32 PM

We have a firing without Muslims or Jesse Jackson involved.

seven on November 5, 2010 at 2:27 PM

I couldn’t believe the commercial on XM radio this morning promoting Jesse Jacksons radio show as Jackson claimed “we need to speak for blacks, hispanics and all minorities”. Nothing about caucasians?

Jesse Jackson is a RACIST!!!

dthorny on November 5, 2010 at 2:32 PM

THE WORST MAN IN THE WORLD!

stldave on November 5, 2010 at 2:34 PM

They should hire Mark Steyn as a guest host. The ratings would quadruple, guaranteed.

visions on November 5, 2010 at 2:34 PM

I couldn’t believe the commercial on XM radio this morning promoting Jesse Jacksons radio show as Jackson claimed “we need to speak for blacks, hispanics and all minorities”. Nothing about caucasians?

Jesse Jackson is a RACIST!!!

dthorny on November 5, 2010 at 2:32 PM

Given that Jessie has trouble doing anything for anyone other than himself, this caucasian would prefer that Jesse not speak for him.

unclesmrgol on November 5, 2010 at 2:35 PM

Out of curiosity, does CNN and Fox have an ethics policy too? What is it?

fastestslug on November 5, 2010 at 2:27 PM

I just looked up other news personalities political donations and answered my own question.

fastestslug on November 5, 2010 at 2:35 PM

I agree that the ban is stupid in this case, but not following official office policy on this is even more stupid. The man deserves this suspension, especially after the hypocrisy on Fox.

Esthier on November 5, 2010 at 2:36 PM

KEEF did this knowing it would come out , so when comcast steps in and fires him he can claim this was the cause !

ELMO Q on November 5, 2010 at 11:52 AM

I don’t know if Keef’s that bright, but the Comcast suits might be. Share is the term that comes to mind.

Barnestormer on November 5, 2010 at 2:38 PM

Wow, that’s a shocking twist, but I agree, it’s probably just for the weekend.

He’s not a journalist anyway. Not that NBC has any journalistic standards anyway.

dogsoldier on November 5, 2010 at 2:39 PM

It may not be just the donations, but that they were to politicians he had on his show. Perhaps MSNBC is worried about that being set-up by Olbermann, and MSNBC would be responsible under election laws for giving the politicians a free airtime donation.

(Which they do in a sense, anyway, but this was a little too obvious.)

Wethal on November 5, 2010 at 2:41 PM

They should make the suspension permanent.

Then go after the rest of the clowns; Maddow, Shultz, Matthews.

GarandFan on November 5, 2010 at 2:42 PM

Time to clean the swamp? You Betcha!

Indian Outlaw on November 5, 2010 at 2:42 PM

Sounds like an excuse to get rid of him. His ratings stink, he’s become so unhinged on-air that even Jon Stewart is trashing him, and MSNBC’s coverage of the mid-term elections was such a spectacle of snark and lunacy that NBC News has to have been terribly embarrassed by it. I think he’s history.

rsrobinson on November 5, 2010 at 2:43 PM

So all the lying and name calling he does is not against the rules. Huh.

Akzed on November 5, 2010 at 2:44 PM

The left is building a reputation that associates the party with Keith, Behar, Jesse Jackson and Bill Ayers etc scoundrels.

seven on November 5, 2010 at 2:44 PM

I think this is bad news.

So what? OlbyMan gave money to Democrats? What a horror!!

Why, I gotta’ sit down. What a shock!

Jeez….so frekin what.

He’ll only use this along with his lefty ilk to blame the “noise machine” of being against free speech, forcing him off the air, etc.

They just gave him a satchel of ammunition and a free pass to the Rick Sanchez Martyr Hall of Fame.

Opposite Day on November 5, 2010 at 2:44 PM

What will crr6 have to do in the evening now?

Akzed on November 5, 2010 at 2:44 PM

Dan Rather was a major contributor to the Democratic party and candidates, yet CBS saw no issue with this.

I think MSNBC, realizing the ratings are at the bottom, were looking for a reason to get Olby off the air.

jediwebdude on November 5, 2010 at 2:44 PM

MSNBC is still broadcasting? really? come on, nobody is dumb enough to keep funding an organization that pulls such a small audience; and who’s this Olbermann guy y’all are talking about?

Over50 on November 5, 2010 at 2:44 PM

What will crr6 have to do in the evening now?

Akzed on November 5, 2010 at 2:44 PM

Irritate HotAir readers.

Missy on November 5, 2010 at 2:46 PM

will they bring back the shuster?

hmmmmm

cmsinaz on November 5, 2010 at 2:48 PM

What will crr6 have to do in the evening now?

Akzed on November 5, 2010 at 2:44 PM

Eat even more doughnuts and Doritos.

BigWyo on November 5, 2010 at 2:49 PM

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