Martin Bashir, an MSNBC host known for his blunt and controversial commentary, has resigned after fallout over some unsavory remarks he made about former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin.
MSNBC President Phil Griffin released a statement confirming Bashir’s resignation, calling Bashir a “good man.”
“Martin Bashir resigned today, effective immediately. I understand his decision and I thank him for three great years with msnbc. Martin is a good man and respected colleague—we wish him only the best,” the statement read, according to Mediate.
Bashir had originally given an emailed statement to the news site, explaining his departure and expressing regret for his actions:
After making an on-air apology, I asked for permission to take some additional time out around the Thanksgiving holiday. Upon further reflection, and after meeting with the President of MSNBC, I have tendered my resignation. It is my sincere hope that all of my colleagues, at this special network, will be allowed to focus on the issues that matter without the distraction of myself or my ill-judged comments.
I deeply regret what was said, will endeavor to work hard at making constructive contributions in the future and will always have a deep appreciation for our viewers—who are the smartest, most compassionate and discerning of all television audiences. I would also wish to express deepest gratitude to my immediate colleagues, and our contributors, all of whom have given so much of themselves to our broadcast.
On his Nov. 15 show, Bashir slammed Palin, calling her a “world-class idiot” in response to her reference to slavery while discussing U.S. debt to China. Bashir detailed certain practices a particular slave owner might fancy (such as having one slave “s–t” in another slave’s mouth) to show Palin the error of her comparison and then offhandedly added, “If anyone truly qualified for a dose of discipline [from the slave owner] … then she would be the outstanding candidate.”
Bashir later apologized for the commentary, which he called “deeply offensive.”