Longtime MSNBC anchor Chris Matthews on Monday night said he is retiring from the network, announcing his departure at the beginning of his show Hardball.
Last month, Matthews, 74, was criticized for comparing Sen. Bernie Sanders' (I-Vt.) campaign victories to the Nazi invasion of France, and over the weekend, a journalist accused Matthews of making inappropriate comments to her while she was in the makeup room preparing to go on his show.
Matthews said he decided to retire after speaking with his bosses, and apologized for his previous remarks. "Compliments on a woman's appearance that some men, including me, might have once incorrectly thought were okay were never okay," he said, "not then and certainly not today, and for making such comments in the past, I'm sorry." Matthews, who hosted Hardball for 20 years on MSNBC, said he is working on a book, and will "still write and talk about politics."
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After a commercial break, MSNBC's Steve Kornacki took over hosting the show. Clearly shocked by the news, Kornacki said Matthews is "a giant, he's a legend. It's been an honor for me to work with him, to sit in here on occasion. I know how much you meant to him, and I know how much he meant to you, and I think you're going to miss him. I know I'm going to."
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