NPR published a story Monday clarifying the role of longtime commentator Cokie Roberts after her recent public remarks about Republican presidential frontrunner Donald Trump.
Roberts called on the “rational wing” of the Republican party to mobilize against Trump in a syndicated column published in late February.
“If [Trump] is nominated by a major party — let alone elected — the reputation of the United States would suffer a devastating blow around the world,” she wrote. “Republicans of good will and good sense must try to stop him.”
Network executives became aware of the column after Roberts “sharply questioned” Trump on MSNBC March 9, according to the story. During that appearance, Roberts asked Trump if he was “proud” that white children were mocking children of color in his name.
But Roberts said her role as a commentator gives her the latitude to express personal positions. Roberts hasn’t been a full-time NPR employees in “decades” and she moved from a news analyst role to being a commentator several years ago, NPR reported.