'I am totally responsible'
C-SPAN political editor Steve Scully has been suspended after admitting he falsely claimed to have been hacked when he faced criticism for a tweet sent to former White House staffer Anthony Scaramucci.
The network announced Scully's indefinite suspension on Thursday, saying he admitted the day before to lying about being hacked, The Associated Press reports. Scully was set to moderate the second 2020 presidential debate before its cancellation.
"He understands that he made a serious mistake," C-SPAN said. "We were very saddened by this news and do not condone his actions."
Scully had raised eyebrows when he tweeted to Scaramucci, the former White House communications director who has come out against President Trump since his brief tenure, and asked him, "should I respond to Trump?" Trump had recently attacked Scully as a "never-Trumper." C-SPAN released a statement saying Scully "did not originate the tweet and believes his account has been hacked," adding that the Commission on Presidential Debates was investigating with authorities' help.
But Scully on Thursday admitted that he did, in fact, send the tweet to Scaramucci himself "out of frustration" after he heard Trump attack him on television.
"The next morning when I saw that this tweet had created a new controversy, I falsely claimed that my Twitter account had been hacked," Scully said. "These were both errors in judgement for which I am totally responsible. I apologize."
Trump was quick to celebrate Scully's suspension in a tweet, claiming, "I was right again!" C-SPAN said that "after some distance from this episode, we believe in his ability to continue to contribute to C-SPAN," while Scully asked for "forgiveness as I try to move forward in a moment of reflection and disappointment in myself."