JACKSON, Miss., March 15 (UPI) -- Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour's spokesman resigned because he circulated off-color jokes about the Japanese earthquake, the governor's office said.
Barbour spokesman Dan Turner, a former reporter who had been Barbour's press aide since 2008, resigned Monday after the jokes were reported by national media, Politico reported.
"Gov. Haley Barbour has accepted Dan Turner's resignation as press secretary," the statement read. "Laura Hipp will now serve in that capacity."
Turner told Politico Barbour, who may be considering a run to be the 2012 Republican presidential nominee, took full responsibility for the comments.
Turner included the jokes as part of his Friday press round-up for Barbour, Politico said. Similar lines were regularly featured in his early morning e-mail messages to Barbour staffer members and allies.