MSNBC host apologizes for jokes about Romney's grandson

LOS ANGELES Tue Dec 31, 2013 4:14pm EST

Former U.S. presidential candidate Mitt Romney speaks to the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in National Harbor, Maryland, March 15, 2013. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

Former U.S. presidential candidate Mitt Romney speaks to the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in National Harbor, Maryland, March 15, 2013.

Credit: Reuters/Jonathan Ernst

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LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - MSNBC television host Melissa Harris-Perry apologized on Tuesday for a recent segment on her show that joked about former U.S. Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney's adopted African-American grandson.

Harris-Perry said that the segment on Sunday's "Melissa Harris-Perry" show was meant to celebrate diversity and not disparage it.

"Whatever the intent, the segment proceeded in an unexpected way that was offensive," Harris-Perry said in a statement. "Without reservation or qualification, I apologize to the Romney family and to all families built on loving transracial adoptions."

The segment asked a panel to humorously caption a photo from the past year. One of the photos was of Romney holding his adopted African-American grandson alongside his wife, Ann, and other grandchildren.

Actress Pia Glenn sang "one of these things is not like the others," and comedian Dean Obeidallah joked that the photo "really sums up the diversity of the Republican party."

Harris-Perry, who is African-American and a political science professor at Tulane University, is the third MSNBC host to apologize for insensitive comments in the past two months.

Last month, actor Alec Baldwin's late-night talk show was canceled shortly after he apologized for calling a celebrity photographer a homophobic slur.

Host Martin Bashir resigned earlier this month after being suspended by MSNBC for making derogatory comments about former U.S. vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin.

MSNBC is owned by Comcast Corp.

(Reporting by Eric Kelsey; editing by Mary Milliken and Leslie Adler)

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Comments (20)
Waveman wrote:
MSNBC: run by vile, hateful people, staffed by vile hateful people, guests are vile hateful people and watched by vile hateful people. There is nothing else there.

Dec 31, 2013 4:35pm EST  --  Report as abuse
Waveman wrote:
MSNBC: run by vile, hateful people, staffed by vile hateful people, guests are vile hateful people and watched by vile hateful people. There is nothing else there.

Dec 31, 2013 4:35pm EST  --  Report as abuse
FrankBlank wrote:
She should have said the Bible told her to do it. Then quoted something hysterically insane from Revelations.

Dec 31, 2013 4:40pm EST  --  Report as abuse
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