C-SPAN announced Thursday that it had suspended host Steve Scully after he admitted having falsely claimed that his Twitter account was hacked last week.
Scully appeared to seek advice on Twitter last Thursday from a prominent critic of President Donald Trump and then denied it.
Scully, who had been scheduled to moderate this week's presidential debate before it was canceled, admitted that he had lied about sending a tweet to former White House adviser Anthony Scaramucci, "for which I am totally responsible."
Scully said he had been relentlessly targeted in conservative news outlets and social media and by Trump himself. And then, at that point, he turned to Scaramucci for advice, Scully now admits.
"Out of frustration I sent a brief tweet addressed to Anthony Scaramucci," Scully said in a statement. "The next morning when I saw that this tweet had created a new controversy, I falsely claimed that my Twitter account had been hacked."
"I apologize," he said in the statement.
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Scully had asked Scaramucci on Twitter, "should I respond to trump."
The tweet ignited criticism from Republicans, who questioned Scully's potential fairness.
Shortly after the suspension was announced, Trump used the news as justification to back out of the debate.
Trump refused to participate in this week's debate after the Commission on Presidential Debates announced that it would make the event virtual to protect "the health and safety of all involved" after Trump tested positive for the coronavirus. The president spent three nights at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, where he received treatment for Covid-19.
"The Trump Campaign was not treated fairly by the 'Commission'. Did I show good instincts in being the first to know?" Trump tweeted.