MSNBC anchor Melissa Harris-Perry took to Twitter on Wednesday to apologize to Mitt Romney’s family for offensive comments she made about one of the Romney grandchildren, according to a Dec. 31 Yahoo News report.
“I am sorry. Without reservation or qualification. I apologize to the Romney family,” Harris Perry tweeted, in response to outrage over her comments about Romney’s black grandson during a segment on her MSNBC talk show, “Melissa Harris-Perry.”
According to CNN, the host’s apology continued on the MSNBC website, where it read, “As black child born into large white Mormon family I feel familiarity w/ Romney family pic & never meant to suggest otherwise.” She continued her Twitter apology with, “I apologize to all families built on loving transracial adoptions who feel I degraded their lives or choices.”
Harris-Perry and her panel for last Sunday’s segment were commenting on some of the most talked about photos of the year, including one of Romney and his grandchildren, including adopted grandson, Kieran, who is African-American, Yahoo News reports.
“One of these things is not like the others, one of these things just isn't the same,” actress Pia Glenn sung, adding, “And that little baby, front and center, would be the one.” This was followed by the Daily Beast’s Dean Obeidallah, who quipped, “It really sums up the diversity of the Republican Party and the RNC, where they have the whole convention and they find the one black person.”
Harris-Perry described the baby as “gorgeous,” before joking that Kieran would one day marry North West, the daughter of Kanye West and Kim Kardashian, CNN reports. “Can you imagine Mitt Romney and Kanye West as in-laws?” Harris-Perry said, to a set full of laughter.
Romney announced on Twitter in September that Kieran James Romney had been adopted. According to CNN, his son Ben and daughter-in-law Andelynne are Kieran’s parents.
After defending her “song” on Twitter, Glenn backtracked with an apology of her own, tweeting, “Adoptive parents giving a child of ANY ethnicity a loving home,I apologize. I absolutely did not intend to harm you but it seems that I have.”
And not be outdone, Obeidallah also defended his comments, and explained his joke in an email to CNN.
“Occasionally my jokes have been known to ‘cross the line’ and I can assure you that in the future some of my jokes will do that again,”he said. “My joke on MHP was not intended in any way to mock the Romney family or the baby they adopted. Rather it was a joke about the lack of racial diversity that we see at the Republican National Convention. I apologize to the Romney family and especially the baby if any of them were offended by that joke.”
Republican politicians from Sarah Palin to Former Republican Sen. Scott Brown have shown their outrage over Harris-Perry and her panel’s conduct, and have called the behavior inappropriate.