MSNBC's “Countdown” host will return after two-day, unpaid benching over campaign contributions
Keith Olbermann's indefinite suspension from MSNBC will end on Tuesday, NBC announced on Sunday evening.
“I have determined that suspending Keith through and including Monday night's program is an appropriate punishment for his violation of our policy,” MSNBC president Phil Griffin said in a statement. “We look forward to having him back on the air Tuesday night."
Griffin suspended Olbermann indefinitely without pay on Friday after Politico uncovered that the "Countdown" host had donated to three Democratic campaigns shortly before last week's midterm elections — a violation of NBC policy. Olbermann anchored MSNBC's election coverage.
Earlier Sunday, Olbermann broke his silence about the suspension. “Greetings From Exile!" Olbermann wrote on his Twitter feed. "A quick, overwhelmed, stunned THANK YOU for support that feels like a global hug & obviously left me tweetless XO.”
Olbermann could have avoided a suspension from "Countdown" with a mea culpa on the MSNBC show, but he refused, according to Politico.
Citing network sources, Mike Allen reported Sunday that Olbermann refused the on-camera apology, which forced Griffin to take him off the air.
By putting Olbermann back on air rather quickly, Griffin and MSNBC will (mostly) avoid criticism that a double standard exists among its talent. Shortly after the news of Olbermann's contributions leaked, it was revealed that "Morning Joe" host Joe Scarborough donated $4,200 to Oregon Republican Derrick Kitts' failed 2006 campaign for a U.S. House seat.