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POLITICO Suspends Reporter For Incendiary Romney Remarks


Williams' comments Thursday, along with some incendiary tweets about Romney, led to his suspension, POLITICO's founding editors John Harris and Jim VandeHei wrote in a staff memo, obtained by TPM.

"POLITICO journalists have a clear and inflexible responsibility to cover politics fairly and free of partisan bias," they wrote. "This expectation extends to all of the public platforms in which we and our reporting and analysis appears, including cable TV and social media platforms like Twitter."

Williams' comment about Romney on MSNBC "fell short of our standards for fairness and judgment in an especially unfortunate way," the editors added. "Joe has acknowledged that his appearance reflected a poor choice of words. This appearance came in the context of other remarks on Twitter that, cumulatively, require us to make clear that our standards are serious, and so are the consequences for disregarding them. This is true for all POLITICO journalists, including an experienced and well-respected voice like Joe Williams."

The Washington Free Beacon first flagged the video of Williams, and POLITICO's Dylan Byers reported the staff memo overnight.

Watch the clip below:

About The Author


David Taintor is a news editor at Talking Points Memo. Previously, he worked at NBC News and Adweek. He's a native of Minnesota. Reach him at