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Friday, November 5, 2010

Keith Olbermann 'Suspended Indefinitely' For Monetary Campaign Donations

Keith Olbermann 3Image by afagen via Flickr
What was good for MSNBC's Morning Joe
host Joe Scarborough is not good for
another MSNBC's anchor Keith Olbermann
to do; as Olbermann was suspended without
pay on 11/5 by the network President Phil
Griffin 
While Fox News are allowed to call unemployed job seeking Americans violent, gun-toting crazies; MSNBC President Phil Griffin, decided to put the stalwart of journalism fairness and supporter of unemployed job seekers Keith Olbermann on suspension "Indefinitely", for campaign donations to Democratic candidates, on November 5. 

Review the MUST SEE article with Keith Olbermann's video on "If the Tea Party Wins, We All Lose, Why You Must Vote," on the "Reach Out Job Search" Blog October 28, 2010.

MSNBC's President Phil Griffin issued statement on Friday regarding this decision.
 “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,” Griffin wrote.
There was no word in Griffin's statement on the length of Mr. Olbermann's suspension or, whether his political donations would require the cable network to ultimately dismiss him.

Looking at MSNBC pass behaviors, when the so-called liberal network, has made decisions to suspend its news anchors; the future of the “Countdown with Keith Obermann” program and, any future appearances of the award winning journalist on the network, is in serious question.

On April 6, 2010, anchor David Shuster was suspended ‘indefinitely’ by Griffin after it was alleged he auditioned for a new political show on CNN. He has not appeared on MSNBC since, but remains under contract.

Also, former MSNBC, now truTV host Ashleigh Banfield, was put into what can best be described as a “black-hole” office space; after she raised concerns about the United States war with Iraq, during an out of office speaking engagement in April 2003, at Kansas State University.
“I was office-less for ten months ... No phone, no computer. For ten months I had to report to work every day and ask where I could sit. If somebody was away I could use their desk. Eventually, after ten months of this, I was given an office that was a tape closet. They cleared the tapes out and put a desk and a TV in there, and a computer and phone. It was pretty blatant. The message was crystal clear. Yet they wouldn't let me leave,” Banfield told New Canaan-Darien Magazine in January 2009
“I begged for seventeen months to be let out of my contract. If they had no use for me, let's just part ways amicably—no need for payouts, just a clean break. And [NBC News President Neal Shapiro] wouldn't allow it. I don't know what his rationale was—perhaps he thought I would take what I felt was a very strong brand, and others felt was a very strong brand, to another network and make a success of it. Maybe that's why he chose to keep me in a warehouse. I will never forgive him for his cruelty and the manner in which he decided to dispose of me,” Banfield stated.
The donations were first unearthed by Politico.com from Federal Election Commission filings. After Politico reported the contributions earlier this week, Olbermann issued a statement of his own, noting, among other things, that he made the contributions on October 28, just days before Election Day.
“One week ago, on the night of Thursday, Oct. 28, 2010, after a discussion with a friend about the state of politics in Arizona, I donated $2,400 each to the re-election campaigns of Democratic Representatives Raul Grijalva and Gabrielle Giffords,” Olbermann said. “I also donated the same amount to the campaign of Democratic Senatorial candidate Jack Conway in Kentucky.”
He went on to emphasize that he did not use his cable network program to encourage anyone else to make the same donations.
 “I did not privately or publicly encourage anyone else to donate to these campaigns, nor to any others in this election or any previous ones, nor have I previously donated to any political campaign at any level,” Olbermann’s statement said.
Another MSNBC host have made similar donations. To date, this host has not been suspended with, or like in Keith Olbermann’s case, without pay. 

"Morning Joe" host former Republican Florida Congressman Joe Scarborough, made various campaign donations in 2006 to Derrick Kitts, another Republican candidate for the U.S. House from Oregon.
SCARBOROUGH, JOE PENSACOLA,FL 32503 MSNBC/HOST 3/31/06 $2,100 Kitts, Derrick (R) 
SCARBOROUGH, JOE PENSACOLA,FL 32503 MSNBC/HOST 3/31/06 $2,100 Kitts, Derrick (R)
Source, Open Secrets-Center for Responsive Politics
Joe Scarborough, current host of the "Morning Joe" talk show and the host of the former evening newscast "Scarborough Country," donated $4,200 in March 2006 to Derrick Kitts, a Republican candidate for the U.S. House from Oregon. 


Here was the NBC’s explanation for Joe Scarborough’s campaign donations in 2007
A spokesperson for NBC, Jeremy Gaines, replied to questions sent to Scarborough. "Yes, he did make a donation to Derrick Kitts. Kitts is an old friend of Joe's. Joe hosts an opinion program and is not a news reporter."
Regardless, Olbermann’s explanation was not enough to skirt the so-called ethics rules at NBC News, and Griffin believed that he had no choice but to suspend him. 


It should be noted that Keith Olberman is MSNBC’s network’s highest-rated personality, whose show, ‘Countdown with Keith Olbermann,’ at 8 p.m./7c, draws more than 950,000 viewers nightly.

Griffin himself was quoted just last month in the New York Times criticizing Fox News parent company, News Corporation, for donating money to several organizations working to defeat Democratic candidates.

As reported earlier on the “Reach Out Job Search” blog November 5, Fox News of “Follow the Money” program host Eric Bolling, on November 3, did a segment with unemployed 99ers advocates Wendy Ashley and Rhonda Taylor. In the segment, he portrayed Americans 30 Million unemployed and underemployed job seekers as entities to be “FEARED”.

Both Ashley and Taylor confirmed on the “Reach Out Job Search” radio show November 4, that neither one of them were told by the Fox News producer that the segment would be focused on “gun-toting 99ers who are unemployed” before appearing on the program.

In addition, Taylor and Rhonda noted that the branded “fair and balanced” Fox News Network agreed in advance of the interview, to focus on the state of Indiana decision hire armed guards, to the tune of 1 Million Dollars, for the protection of its 36 unemployment offices, against jobless Americans. 


Up to 300,000 of Indiana’s residents will exhaust all supplemental income payments on November 30, if Congress does not extend the benefit; along with 15 Million other unemployed Americans.


What are your thoughts on this article? How do you feel about the Keith Olbermann suspension, while Joe Scarborough continued to be on the air, receiving pay, when he gave his campaign donations in 2006?  Feel free to comment on this story!
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