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Olbermann leaving MSNBC immediately

Published: Fri, January 21, 2011 @ 9:45 p.m.


MSNBC host Keith Olbermann announced today that he is leaving the network and has taped his last “Countdown” show.

MSNBC issued a statement that it had ended its contract with the controversial host, with no further explanation.

Olbermann hosted the network’s most popular show, but his combative liberal opinions often made him a target of critics.

Olbermann did not explain why he was leaving.

“MSNBC thanks Keith for his integral role in MSNBC’s success and we wish him well in his future endeavors,” the network said.

A spokesman said Phil Griffin, MSNBC’s president, would not comment on Olbermann’s exit. Spokesman Jeremy Gaines would say only that the acquistion of NBC Universal by Comcast, which received regulatory approval this week, had nothing to do with the decision.

Olbermann was suspended without pay from the network for two days in November for donating to three Democratic candidates, which violated NBC News’ policy on political donations. Olbermann complained that he was being punished for mistakenly violating an inconsistently applied rule that he had known nothing about.

The host apologized to fans — but not to the network.

Olbermann, before leaving the show with a final signature toss of his script toward the camera, thanked his audience for sticking with him and read a James Thurber poem.

“This may be the only television program where the host was much more in awe of the audience than vice versa,” he said.

He thanked a series of people, including the late Tim Russert, but pointedly not Griffin or NBC News President Steve Capus.

Olbermann’s prime-time show is the network’s top-rated. His evolution from a humorous look at the day’s headlines into a pointedly liberal show in the last half of George W. Bush’s administration led MSNBC to largely shift the tone of the network in his direction, with the hirings of Rachel Maddow and Lawrence O’Donnell in primetime.


1UnionForever(1470 comments)posted 5 years, 3 months ago

He was a liberal socialist Dumbocrat supporter! Glad he's gone.

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2harleydog(243 comments)posted 5 years, 3 months ago

Glad to see that idiot go, now all they have to do is get rid of the EDito show, Rachael lezbo, and lawrence loud mouth and maybe msnbc will have a shot at coming in 5 place in the ratings.

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3harleydog(243 comments)posted 5 years, 3 months ago

Sorry EDiot show

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4DJ0(72 comments)posted 5 years, 3 months ago

... gee, guess I'll have to go the the circus now to see the clowns. Oh, wait. Rachael is still there. Herr Obermann was entertaining when he did sports commentary but he started to believe his own publicity.

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5georgejeanie(1398 comments)posted 5 years, 3 months ago

What happened this guy couldnt take orders. He didnt get his way, just like all the liberrals if you dont do what I want then I quit and you are no good. Maybe Fox can give him a job, and show him what a real news organization is like.

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6saddad(651 comments)posted 5 years, 3 months ago

What amazes me is that the right wingers dont look around and notice that they are joined with real nincompoops. If not able to understand that they themselves arnt too bright I would still expect that they could see others around them to be defective. Heck--a good portion of them appear to be the offspring of close relatives. But Im trying to not get involved with them too much here as Ive learned that you cant fix stupid.

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7Silence_Dogood(1656 comments)posted 5 years, 3 months ago

It was the "WORSTEST"
show in the worrrrrlldd anyways.

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8Ret(39 comments)posted 5 years, 3 months ago

Like you falconeddy, I can not stand to watch him or Ms Maddow for 5 minutes before I have to change the channel. I more of a fan of O'Reilly and Van Susteren. That being said, I do not want any voices silence. MSNBC is liberal leaning network, this is no surprise to anyone. When you tune in to them you know what to expect.

The truly sad part is that now Rush and Glen are loosing one of their best sound bites in which to make fun of.

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9borylie(946 comments)posted 5 years, 3 months ago

saddad,please watch your rhetoric, we 're all about civility now. Do your part. Have a very nice day.

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10nojimbo(286 comments)posted 5 years, 3 months ago

While I wasn't a fan of Olbermann in the last few years, he was a voice in the wilderness during the worst of the W years of lying us into Iraq.

What Olbermann and MSNBC became was a mirror image of the "we're right, they're wrong" propaganda spewed out daily by FOX.

So now we have a solid 20% of the electorate on either side that's just completely rigid in their beliefs. Neither the FOX or MSNBC pundits are helping our nation.

The hope for the country is the people in the middle who think that everyone who can work should work and contribute to society and that most people want to be left alone yet realizes that some government is necessary to help those who can't work and also to do things collectively that individuals or the market aren't capable of.

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11walter_sobchak(2587 comments)posted 5 years, 3 months ago

His self-obsessed pomposity will definitley not be missed. He is just a typical liberal East Coast journalist that believe they are each the smartest person in the room. These kind of people cannot relate to the people that live in fly-over country. Similar to George Clooney, they are so smug that they love the smell of their own farts. (Kudos to South Park!) His calling of President Bush a liar was over the top. There is a vast difference in erring in judgement and purposely not telling the truth.

But, Olbermann's failure once again is due to one thing. His show was not interesting or entertaining. He spent the hour mocking Republicans and conservatives and it gets old. Maddow and the E.D. show are the same, as are Hannity and Beck. This is why O'Reilly is cleaning his clock in ratings.

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12cambridge(3921 comments)posted 5 years, 3 months ago

walter....Are you saying that bush wasn't lying when he said that it was a slam dunk that they knew where the WMD's were, Iraq was involved in 9/11 and Al Queda, Iraq was a imminent threat to America and had a nuclear weapons program?

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