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Olbermann Suspended Over Donations

Olbermann Suspended Over Donations


Gay-supportive MSNBC host Keith Olbermann has been suspended from the network indefinitely without pay because he contributed to candidates without obtaining advance approval from his supervisors, The Huffington Post reports.

Politico reported Friday that Olbermann had donated $2,400 each to the reelection campaigns of two Congress members from Arizona, Raul Grijalva and Gabrielle Giffords, and the campaign of Kentucky U.S. Senate hopeful Jack Conway, all Democrats.

Because Olbermann did not obtain prior approval for the contributions, "I have suspended him indefinitely without pay," MSNBC president Phil Griffin said in a statement.

Griffin has had conflicts previously with Countdown host Olbermann and other MSNBC personnel, and the move indicates a further assertion of Griffin's authority over the cable network's on-air personalities, according to The Huffington Post.

Olbermann won many LGBT fans with his support of marriage equality, as indicated in a commentary after California voters passed the anti-gay marriage measure Proposition 8. He was one of The Advocate's People of the Year for 2008 and featured in the 2010 Pride issue.

Of the candidates receiving Olbermann's donations, Grijalva has been declared victor over Republican challenger Ruth McClung, Giffords leads Jesse Kelly in a race that remains too close to call, and Conway lost to Tea Party favorite Rand Paul to fill the seat being vacated by retiring Republican Jim Bunning.

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