NBC fires Halperin af­ter sex ha­rass­ment ac­cu­sa­tions

The Standard Journal - - ENTERTAINMENT - By David Bauder

NEW YORK — NBC News said it has ter­mi­nated its con­tract with Mark Halperin, the po­lit­i­cal jour­nal­ist who was ac­cused of sex­ual ha­rass­ment by sev­eral women when he worked at ABC News more than a decade ago.

Since the charges came to light last week, publisher Pen­guin Press can­celed a planned book by Halperin and John Heile­mann about the 2016 elec­tion and HBO pulled the plug on a minis­eries that would have been based on the book. Show­time also said Halperin would not be brought back with co-hosts Heile­mann and Mark McKin­non should the po­lit­i­cal series “The Cir­cus” be re­newed.

At NBC News, Halperin was a con­trib­u­tor who was most vis­i­ble as a reg­u­lar pan­elist on MSNBC’s “Morn­ing Joe.” The net­work had ini­tially sus­pended him last week.

Halperin has apol­o­gized f or his be­hav­ior and said he sought coun­sel­ing. He said he ac­knowl­edges and apol­o­gizes for con­duct that was of­ten ag­gres­sive and crude.

“No one had filed a hu­man re­sources com­plaint against me, no col­league had con­fronted me,” Halperin said on Twit­ter. “But I didn’t need a call from HR to know that I was a self­ish, im­ma­ture per­son, who was be­hav­ing in a man­ner that had to stop.”

Jour­nal­ist Eleanor McManus was in­ter­viewed by NBC’s Megyn Kelly, de­scrib­ing how Halperin tried to kiss her and more in his of­fice in the late 1990s, when she was a col­lege stu­dent and had been in­vited by him to give ca­reer ad­vice.

She said she quickly left the of­fice and didn’t re­port the in­ci­dent, and t hat t he sto­ries t hat emerged about Halperin last week made her an­gry.

“I’m an­gry be­cause I was silent, and be­cause I was silent this hap­pened to other peo­ple,” she said.

She said Halperin’s be­hav­ior was “an open se­cret,” and that she’s up­set that some women did not pur­sue jour­nal­ism as a ca­reer be­cause of what had hap­pened to them.

Halperin said on Twit­ter that some of the al­le­ga­tions made against him were not true, al­though he did not spec­ify which ones. “But I re­al­ize that’s a small point in the scheme of things,” he said.

Mark Halperin

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