C-SPAN announced Thursday it had suspended political editor Steve Scully indefinitely after he admitted he lied that his Twitter account was hacked after a message to former Trump aide-turned-adversary Anthony Scaramucci emerged.
Scully, the “Washington Journal” host who was slated to moderate the now-canceled town hall debate between president Trump and Joe Biden, went viral last week after a tweet sent from his account indicated he had reached out to the former White House communications director.
Scully issued his first statement addressing the controversy to CNN following his suspension.
“For several weeks, I was subjected to relentless criticism on social media and in conservative news outlets regarding my role as moderator for the second presidential debate, including attacks aimed directly at my family,” Scully wrote. “This culminated on Thursday, October 8th when I heard President Trump go on national television twice and falsely attack me by name. Out of frustration, I sent a brief tweet addressed to Anthony Scaramucci. The next morning when I saw that this tweet had created a controversy, I falsely claimed that my Twitter account had been hacked.”
“These were both errors in judgment for which I am totally responsible. I apologize,” Scully said.
He continued, “These actions have let down a lot of people, including my colleagues at C-SPAN, where I have worked for the past 30 years, professional colleagues in the media, and the team at the Commission on Presidential Debates. I ask for their forgiveness as I try to move forward in a moment of reflection and disappointment in myself.”
C-SPAN also issued a statement, revealing that the network and the Commission on Presidential Debates (CPD) were made aware about Scully’s fabrication on Wednesday.
“We are very saddened by this news and do not condone his actions,” C-SPAN said. “Starting immediately, we have placed Steve on administrative leave. After some distance from this episode, we believe in his ability to continue to contribute to C-SPAN.”
President Trump touted Scully’s suspension on Twitter.
“I was right again!” the president exclaimed. “Steve Scully just admitted he was lying about his Twitter being hacked. The Debate was Rigged! He was suspended from @cspan indefinitely. The Trump Campaign was not treated fairly by the ‘Commission’. Did I show good instincts in being the first to know?”
I was right again! Steve Scully just admitted he was lying about his Twitter being hacked. The Debate was Rigged! He was suspended from @cspan indefinitely. The Trump Campaign was not treated fairly by the “Commission”. Did I show good instincts in being the first to know?
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 15, 2020
The Hill media reporter Joe Concha pondered if the CPD’s decision to scrap the second debate so quickly had anything to do with Scully’s false claim.
“One thought on the Scully suspension after lying about getting hacked. The Presidential Debates Commission was very quick to cancel the second debate that would have watched by 70-75 million. No effort was made to find an alternative date. Question is if Scully impacted decision,” Concha tweeted.
One thought on the Scully suspension after lying about getting hacked. The Presidential Debates Commission was very quick to cancel the second debate that would have watched by 70-75 million. No effort was made to find an alternative date. Question is if Scully impacted decision.
— Joe Concha (@JoeConchaTV) October 15, 2020
The CPD did not immediately respond to Fox News’ requests for comment.
Both C-SPAN and the CPD initially defended Scully. The day after Scully tweeted at Scaramucci, C-SPAN issued a statement claiming Scully “did not originate the tweet” in question. The statement added that the CPD was investigating the incident “with the help of authorities.”
Story cited here.