(CNN) – MSNBC host Martin Bashir said in a statement Wednesday that he would resign from the network following comments he made about former Alaska governor and 2008 Republican vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin.
Bashir apologized on-air last month after suggesting that Palin deserved graphic punishment for comparing U.S. foreign debt to slavery. Palin later canceled an appearance on NBC's "Today."
Following intense backlash for the incendiary comments, Bashir elected to temporarily take additional time off during 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," he said in the statement.
"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."
The president of MSNBC, Phil Griffin, also issued a statement confirming that Bashir would step down and wishing him the best.
"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."
Palin responded to Bashir's initial comments last month.
"Everybody in life takes shots," she said "Fox News Sunday." "I don't have to accept his words – his vile, evil comments. So they don't have to affect me. I move on and I charge forth."
Also last month, the network discontinued former host Alec Baldwin's show "Up Late" after he reportedly yelled anti-gay slurs at a photographer outside his home in New York. Baldwin later apologized for the angry rant in a post to MSNBC's website.
After his show was canceled, Baldwin called on the network to also force Bashir to leave, pointing to his controversial comments.
"Martin Bashir's on the air, and he made his comment on the air!" Baldwin told Gothamist last week.
Bashir's resignation was first reported by Mediaite.
CNN's Dana Davidsen contributed to this report.
He is right to resign, good for him. I disagree with his politics, but he is good at what he does and will wind up somewhere else.
Mr. Bashir expressed his 1st Amendment right and now he's forced to resign. If he's held to this standard, shouldn't all media outlets? As much hatred and vitriol that we hear from Fox News commentators, you've never seen any of them resign or be reprimanded. Mr. Bashir said what most common sense people think about the Quitter from Wasilla. Call it "taking shots" or what have you. Fox News does it ALL THE TIME!!!
I can't believe that you are taking him off the air for saying something we have all been thinking. She is an idiot. Its about time that MSNBC start standing behind there commentators like Fox News. I like Martins show. We should have more shows like his who stand up and take a stand when someone like Sara Palin opens her mouth and says things racist. his.
Sorry to see him go. Palin is an imbecile.
Hahahaha! What a loser!
Good. Glad he's gone. Leave the abuse to the Right and their paid minions on FOX.
gee he got canned just for bashing palin? everybody does that.
There are consequences to attacking Sarah Palin. Just ask Letterman. This is the second MSNBC anchor to resign because of they attacked Mrs. Palin. David Schuster also left after his attack on Todd and Sarah. When will they learn? Sarah Palin is a beloved, Conservative woman. No politician has been attacked like her.
Martin Bashir was wrong to say what he did and he has now resigned, and apparently Sarah Palin having brushed off his comments has chosen to move on and "charge forth".
Perhaps we Americans who wish for a more civil dialog amongst ourselves might start with tuning out (and turning off) those who use bait and hook tactics simply for chuckles and giggles.
Yes. I include media outlets that (truth be told) spend countless energy and dollars fueling the flames of discontent.
Sarah Palin is an idiot.
Good riddance slime ball
the entire group with your unknown network should quit--it is ok to have differences of opinions but the entire crew you worked with is sick. No wonder hardly anyone watches your trash.
That's right, Bashir. Take your mouthful of feces and walk away. Whimper for me.......NOW.
Walk away whimpering, Bashir. Walk away. Your humiliation makes me tingle.
There's no one as petty and as uncivil as a progressive liberal. They have no dignity.
Sarah Palin is a vile pig
Yeah, Palin. Based on your comments it truly didn't affect you.
Go fade into obscurity.
Pride before the fall... His comments in general over the last 6 months were getting increasingly harsher and more sinister. A hate only topped by Al Sharpton, Ed Schultz or Bill Maher. These guys go down next...
Good. She should sue him and MSNBC.
Man some People are so touchy.
Yes, Martin Bashir should have resigned. Yes, his comments were outrageous. And yes, they demonstrate the growing loss of civility in our political dialogue.
But, you know, he actually had a point to make, about Sarah Palin's irrational comparison of debt to slavery. Sarah Palin has never experience slavery, has never observed slavery, has no real idea of what slavery was like, and perhaps lacks the intellectual capacity to truly understand slavery. I think what has been truly remarkable in this enormous brouhaha about Martin Bashir's comments, is how little commentary there has been about the truly evil and vile man, Thomas Thistlewood, who Bashir was using as an example of how truly wicked and disgusting the practice of slavery really was. Perhaps people really do need to hear the story of how Thomas Thistlewood abused and tortured his slaves.
Oh...so "vile evil" is allowed? What if Bashir had called Palin a "vile evil woman?"
But Fox news staff can claim that Obama was personally funding keeping Mosque's open during the Govt shutdown and it's OK?? OK to claim the Pope is marxist??
Must be that good ole Republican logic.. Do as we say, not as we do...
Good..... Regardless of how you feel about a persons political views, it is absolutely not righ to talk about anyone on TV in this manner. That station has become a joke with a lot of no names that spread vial across the news rooms. Maybe we can get rid of that news channel and the tea party.....
After watching the segment, I am pretty sure he was just reading it off the prompter. I would bet about anything I have that MSNBC approved this and even put it into the show. Bashir is the just the fall guy to draw attention away from MSNBC.