New York: MSNBC suspended political analyst Mark Halperin for an off-colour remark about President Barack Obama on "Morning Joe" on Thursday.
"I thought he was a dick yesterday," Halperin said on Thursday`s show during a discussion about Obama`s news conference the day before.
Halperin, a Time magazine editor at large, quickly apologised on the air and in a statement. MSNBC suspended him indefinitely and Halperin said he believed the action was appropriate.
Halperin had prefaced his remark by asking, "Are we on the seven-second delay?" and said after that "I hope it worked”.
The reference was to a brief delay in a TV show transmission that gives a producer the chance to quickly silence an offending remark before it goes out over the air. MSNBC said "Morning Joe" had the delay, but a producer pushed a wrong button and Halperin`s statement wasn`t edited out.
MSNBC said Halperin`s comment was "completely inappropriate and unacceptable" and apologised to the President.
"I want to offer a heartfelt and profound apology to the President, to my MSNBC colleagues, and to the viewers," Halperin said. "My remark was unacceptable, and I deeply regret it."
White House spokesman Jay Carney, a former Time magazine bureau chief in Washington, said Halperin`s comment was an inappropriate thing to say about any president, and that he had expressed this sentiment to network executives.
Carney had no comment on MSNBC`s decision to suspend Halperin.
Time magazine spokesman Daniel Kile said the company had told Halperin his behaviour was unacceptable.