January 7th, 2010
02:07 PM ET
4 years ago

NRSC threatens MSNBC with legal action over Schultz

(CNN) – One day after MSNBC host Ed Schultz said Democrats had asked him to weigh a senatorial bid, Senate Republicans demanded that the network remove the liberal talker from their lineup until he ruled out a run, threatening legal action - even as Schultz himself denied any plans to launch a campaign.

The National Republican Senatorial Committee charged that his presence on the airwaves could mark a potential campaign finance violation.

"I am not running. What do you want me to say?" Schultz told listeners Thursday on his radio show, saying the GOP was just worried he would claim a win if he did: "They know I'd kick some ass."

Schultz – a former conservative who once weighed running for Congress as a Republican – told viewers Monday that he had been asked by Democratic leaders in his home state of North Dakota to consider entering the race to replace retiring Sen. Byron Dorgan, calling the prospect "intriguing."

"In discussing this matter on air, Mr. Schultz is soliciting and receiving feedback from his television audience regarding his viability as a federal candidate, raising his name recognition related to, and making a national audience aware of, his potential candidacy," NRSC chief counsel Sean Cairncross had written in a letter to network president Phil Griffin Thursday that termed Schultz's continued airtime a potential "in-kind" contribution.

"…We request that MSNBC immediately cease from continuing to provide prohibited corporate resources to underwrite Mr. Schultz's U.S. Senate candidate exploratory activities. If you do not do so, we reserve the right to take appropriate legal action."

Republican Gov. John Hoeven had been viewed as holding a major advantage in a Senate matchup against Dorgan.


Filed under: NRSC
soundoff (67 Responses)
  1. WV Gal

    Go Ed, Go!! The Republicans are scared of you. We would miss you on the air, but you would definitely scare the crap out of the "party of no".

    January 7, 2010 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  2. Jim

    Does that man Mike Huckabee should be taken off the air until he declares he is not running for Prez in 2012?

    January 7, 2010 03:17 pm at 3:17 pm |
  3. Bedtime for Obonzo

    Who's Ed Schultz? What's MSNBC?

    January 7, 2010 03:19 pm at 3:19 pm |
  4. Paul Abeln

    Here in Minnesota our governor, Tim Pawlenty, is running for the Republican nomination for president. Pawlenty is constantly out of state at some kind of Republican fund raiser or confab. Pawlenty has a weekly radio show on one of the biggest AM stations in the Twin Cities. Yet, Pawlenty claims he is not yet running for the Republican nomination.

    Republicans should look into Pawlenty's behavior before they start casting stones. Why is it OK for Pawlenty run a campaign for President while using his radio show platform to spew his crap? Why does station WCCO provide prohibited corporate resources to Pawlenty without giving Democrats equal time? Oh, I forgot, the rules don't apply to the Republicans.

    January 7, 2010 03:19 pm at 3:19 pm |
  5. Dan, TX

    Those senate republicans are embarrassing, aren't they?

    January 7, 2010 03:21 pm at 3:21 pm |
  6. Donkey Party

    And how is it different for Palin, Romney, or Huckabee??? The hypocrisy from the right is limitless. What's more frightening is the completely brain-dead following the right has. God save us.

    January 7, 2010 03:22 pm at 3:22 pm |
  7. John Boehner is like Cleopatra, only he bathes in Cheetos

    Ed is not eligible to run in North Dakota, as he lives in Minnesota. For the idiots of NRSC to make any demand, though, is laughable. This is like asking Fox to remove Huckabee.

    January 7, 2010 03:22 pm at 3:22 pm |
  8. Karl

    Now I did not watch the show when Schultz discussed that some were wanting him to run. But if he did not clarify at the time that he was not running, then this should be brought up. Nobody on the right or the left should have the ability to have a dedicated show to endorse their campaign.

    January 7, 2010 03:26 pm at 3:26 pm |
  9. rick

    much ado about nothing! good lord huckabee campaigns weekly on his show!

    January 7, 2010 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  10. www.firedoglake.com

    While I would like to see Ed Schultz run for office, he very explicitly said last night that he will not run for the Senate seat this year.

    What is the NRSC talking about?

    Meanwhile, Mike Huckabee has a show on Faux 'news' despite the fact that some believe he will run for president in 2012.

    January 7, 2010 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  11. NVa Native

    Keep sticking it to them, Ed. These punks who were once a legitimate political party are nothing but a bunch terrorized cry-babies who always claim to be the victim. They aren't even interested in the truth anymore, and with the tea-bagger/fox morons they don't need to be. "Fux Views" is for idiots.

    January 7, 2010 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  12. Jill, California

    Is this one of Steele's 12 Steps? Sue MSNBC because Schultz's show is popular and this might hurt the Republican party. The GOP's reputation is already hurt; between the Cheney family's continuous yapping, Rush's running off at the mouth, and the constant "blame Obama for everything" game. The GOP needs a total makeover!!!

    January 7, 2010 03:35 pm at 3:35 pm |
  13. essie hughes

    I am. Sick and tired of the do nothing but complain gop idiots
    Repubs need to shut up

    January 7, 2010 03:37 pm at 3:37 pm |
  14. BestProfitCompany = WAR

    Please "out of touch" NRSC, please sue. It would be great if you spend your money fighting a corporate company instead of getting rethuglicans elected. Another smart move by "out of touch" rethuglicans.

    January 7, 2010 03:38 pm at 3:38 pm |
  15. porkingamerica

    Grayson, now this windbag reminds me every day why I left the D party.

    January 7, 2010 03:39 pm at 3:39 pm |
  16. S.B. Stein E.B. NJ

    Does he really plan on running? If he says he's not, then we should take him at his word until he does something else. Should he actually change his mind, then nail him and MSNBC with fines.

    January 7, 2010 03:45 pm at 3:45 pm |
  17. Sniffit

    Sniveling whiners. Now who's trying to censor people who disagree with them? Hmmm? At least al the WH has done is use words against the idiocy spewed by Faux Noise...they haven't threatened to abuse legal process like the NRSC. CRY MORE GOP, CRY MORE.

    January 7, 2010 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
1 2 3