An MSNBC spokesman confirmed on Monday morning that MSNBC and NBC News have terminated their contract with political journalist Mark Halperin following news reports last week that he sexually harassed women while working at ABC News in the past.
Halperin was a contributor at NBC and appeared often on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.” NBC took Halperin off the air last week when the allegations first surfaced, and the network had not officially cut ties with the prominent political commentator.
In a CNN report published Wednesday night, five women accused Halperin of sexual misconduct while working at ABC News. Halperin served as the network’s political director, but is no longer affiliated with ABC News. Several of the women told CNN that Halperin propositioned them while reporting on the campaign trail. A few of the women alleged to CNN that Halperin rubbed his genitals against them while fully clothed. Another woman came forward to the Washington Post on Thursday and said that Halperin had her sit on his lap in his office while he was erect.
Halperin apologized in a statement last week and did not outright deny the allegations.
“During this period, I did pursue relationships with women that I worked with, including some junior to me,” he said in a statement. “I now understand from these accounts that my behavior was inappropriate and caused others pain. For that, I am deeply sorry and I apologize. Under the circumstances, I’m going to take a step back from my day-to-day work while I properly deal with this situation.”
Since the allegations surfaced, Penguin Press cancelled Halperin’s forthcoming book and HBO nixed a planned series based on the book.