UPDATED, 11:30 AM: Martin Bashir‘s resignation from MSNBC after making graphic statements about Sarah Palin on his program led to some interesting, and unexpected, results. This morning, for instance, Palin praised the media for keeping on the story alive after Bashir apologized for comments he made about her on his show. “It was refreshing to see though, that many in the media did come out and say, ‘Look our standards have got to be higher than this’,” Palin said this morning on Fox News Channel‘s Fox & Friends. “Those with that platform, with a microphone, a camera in their face, they have to have some more responsibility taken.” Meanwhile, Alec Baldwin, who’d added his voice to the chorus wondering why MSNBC had not punished Bashir for his incendiary, pre-planned on-air comment about Palin — Baldwin had been suspended, then canceled for his homophobic rant against a photographer — weighed in with support of Bashir after word of the latter’s resignation got out. “I’m sorry to learn that @MartinBashir is out at MSNBC,” Baldwin tweeted yesterday, followed a minute later by, “Bashir created great television.” On his November 15 MSNBC program, Bashir called Palin a “world class idiot” for comparing the country’s debt to China to slavery. After describing one slave-owner’s practice of forcing a slave to defecate in another slave’s mouth, Bashir said Palin would be a good candidate for such treatment.
Palin said this morning that Bashir’s comments were kind of par for the course. “At this point I’m used to it. That’s kind of a sad state of affairs, to have to admit that I am used to it,” she said. After Bashir’s November 18 apology, Palin was asked if it was enough; this morning she was asked if his resignation was enough. “My role is to accept his apology and to be humble enough to accept it and move on,” she said, explaining she feels “kind of calloused” by the experience.
In a statement issued yesterday, Bashir said, “Upon further reflection, and after meeting with the president of MSNBC, I have tendered my resignation,” adding, “It is my sincere hope that all of my colleagues, at this special network, will be allowed to focus on the issues that matter without the distraction of myself or my ill-judged comments.”