Time’s Mark Halperin didn’t mince words today when he called President Barack Obama “a dick” on MSNBC’s Morning Joe.
Speaking on Obama’s Wednesday press conference, Halperin summed it up saying, “I thought he was kind of a dick yesterday,” which sent host Joe Scarborough scrambling, “Delay that. Delay that. What are you doing? I can’t believe… don’t do that. Did we delay that?” Working quickly Scarborough shifted the blame to the new guy in the control booth, and his inability to operate the delay button.
Everyone’s calling it a gaffe, despite the fact that Halperin’s statement was obviously intentional, albeit lighthearted. Either way, it wasn’t exactly a graceful move and he issued and apology minutes later, saying, “Joking aside, this is an absolute apology, heartfelt to the president and to the viewers. I became part of the joke and I made a mistake…I apologize to the president and the viewers who heard me say that.”
MSNBC issued a statement suspending Halperin as an analyst:
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.