MSNBC host Melissa Harris-Perry apologized after a segment poking fun at the Romney family, which earlier this year welcomed an adopted baby grandson.
Sunday's Melissa Harris-Perry show featured "photos of the year," which included the family photo released by the Romneys that "a lot of people had emotions about."
The parents' naming choice for the African American baby raised eyebrows: Ben and Andelynne Romney chose the name Kieran, which means "small dark one" in Gaelic, so Harris-Perry and her segment chose to mine the situation for comedy.
Harris-Perry had nothing but good things to say about baby Kieran himself: "Isn't he the most gorgeous?" she coos, imagining the future wedding of Kieran Romney and North West, the daughter of Kim Kardashian and Kanye West.
But she and panelists Pia Glenn and Dean Obeidallah went on to mock the Republican party for its (admitted) problems with race.
“One of these things is not like the others, one of these things just isn’t the same,” Glenn said. “And that little baby, front and center, would be the one."
"I think this picture is great,” added Obeidallah. “It really sums up the diversity of the Republican party, the RNC. At the convention, they find the one black person.”
The segment, predictably, was slammed by other cable news personalities, including those at Fox and CNN, to which Harris-Perry apologized "without reservation or qualification."
I am sorry. Without reservation or qualification. I apologize to the Romney family. #MHPapology— Melissa Harris-Perry (@MHarrisPerry) December 31, 2013
I work by guiding principle that those who offend do not have the right to tell those they hurt that they r wrong for hurting. #MHPapology— Melissa Harris-Perry (@MHarrisPerry) December 31, 2013
Therefore, while I meant no offense, I want to immediately apologize to the Romney family for hurting them. #MHPapology— Melissa Harris-Perry (@MHarrisPerry) December 31, 2013
As black child born into large white Mormon family I feel familiarity w/ Romney family pic & never meant to suggest otherwise. #MHPapology— Melissa Harris-Perry (@MHarrisPerry) December 31, 2013
I apologize to all families built on loving transracial adoptions who feel I degraded their lives or choices. #MHPapology— Melissa Harris-Perry (@MHarrisPerry) December 31, 2013Advertisement
While Obeidallah and Glenn also apologized to the Romney family, neither were as willing to back off their criticism of the GOP.
I want to apologize to any Republican offended by my joke that GOP is not racially diverse. I truly hope GOP never changes-its perfect!— Dean Obeidallah (@Deanofcomedy) December 30, 2013
@DLoesch I apologize to the baby if the baby was offended by my joke mocking GOP's lack or racial diversity.— Dean Obeidallah (@Deanofcomedy) December 30, 2013
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.— Pia Glenn (@PiaGlenn) December 30, 2013
@ritescenter I don't support Mitt Romney but I didn't personally call THE BABY names or mock/attack the baby.— Pia Glenn (@PiaGlenn) December 30, 2013
If I point out the 1 black person&you translate that as an attack ON HIM,who's racist?I don't personally see anything wrong with being black— Pia Glenn (@PiaGlenn) December 30, 2013Advertisement