In the days since its decision to sever ties with contributor Sam Seder, MSNBC says it has listened to the backlash and, in a surprising move, reversed course. "Sam will be welcome on our air going forward".
"I appreciate MSNBC's thoughtful reconsideration and willingness to understand the cynical motives of those who intentionally misrepresented my tweet for their own toxic, political purposes", Seder said.
In a dramatic reversal, MSNBC has chose to bring back Sam Seder as a contributor, days after the two sides parted ways over an old tweet of Seder's that had drawn right-wing criticism.
Seder said earlier this week the network made a mistake cutting ties with him.
Seder told the Washington Post earlier in the week that he reached out to Errol Cockfield, senior vice president of communications at MSNBC, after he saw his 2009 tweet resurface.
The tweet - a joke that Seder's allies pointed out was meant to mock Polanski's continued acceptance in Hollywood at a time when he was attempting to come back to the U.S. - was shown to MSNBC higher-ups, who subsequently decided not to renew his contract. "I'm proud that MSNBC and its staff have set a clear example of the need to get it right".
In a tweet that has since been deleted, Seder said, "Don't care re Polanski, but I hope if my daughter is ever raped it is by an older truly talented man w/a great sense of mise en scene".
Cernovich, a central figure behind a freakish and false conspiracy theory that linked Hillary Clinton's campaign to a supposed child sex ring inside a pizza shop, was triumphant when news broke on Monday that the network was parting with Seder.
As with Sherrod, MSNBC's reversal on Seder could mark a turning point. And many journalists were appalled that the network would capitulate to Cernovich and his misreading of the tweet.
"I've been on [MSNBC] for 14 years; I've been paid by them for over two years".
"I reiterate my longstanding position that people shouldn't be fired for a tweet, *particularly* one that is obviously being read in manifestly bad faith", Mr. Hayes tweeted on Monday. There was context for those tweets. "If they can't make that assessment, if making that assessment is a bridge too far, they have no value as a news organization".
Cernovich did not immediately respond to a request for comment Thursday morning. This reporter, a former MSNBC contributor, started an online petition which had collected more than 11,000 signatures as of Wednesday evening.