MSNBC’s Chris Matthews issued a deep felt apology on behalf of MSNBC over the network’s reporting that the Romney campaign had adopted a slogan – “Keep America American” – that was once used by the Ku Klux Klan in the 1920s.
Matthews, who was not involved in the story called the network’s reporting “irresponsible and incendiary.”
“During the 11 a.m. hour on MSNBC we reported on a blog item that compared a phrase used by the Romney campaign to one used by the KKK in the 1920s,” said Matthews. “It was irresponsible and incendiary of us to do this and showed an appalling lack of judgment. We apologize to the Romney campaign.”
The flare-up began when MSNBC anchor Thomas Roberts read a post written by gay activist John Aravosis who writes for the liberal Americablog, that read, “Romney’s KKK slogan.”
“So you may not hear Mitt Romney say ‘Keep America American’ anymore, because it was a rallying cry for the KKK group, and intimidation against blacks, gays and Jews, and the progressive Americablog was the first to catch on to that,” said Roberts.
One of the instances where Romney used the phrase was in an interview with the LA Times.
“We have on one side a president who wants to transform America into a European-style nation, and you have on the other hand someone like myself that wants to turn American around and keep America American with the principles that mad us the greatest nation on Earth. And I will that that with your help.”
However, Aravosis is still claiming that the blog post was accurate, citing two examples where Romney had used the phrase.
Aravosis is also known for launching the effort to force conservative radio talk-show host Dr. Laura Schlessinger off the air by boycotting her advertisers when she made remarks that angered the homosexual community. Aravosis also took credit for “outing” a conservative operative that once worked in the White House.
Al Sharpton, who also hosts a show on MSNBC, agreed that the network’s apology was in order. “The network did the right thing by apologizing,” said the controversial host.