A day after he was accused of sexual harassment by a journalist, MSNBC decided to keep host Chris Matthews off its airwaves during coverage of the South Carolina primary results.
Matthews is normally a fixture of election night coverage, which made his absence on Saturday all the more notable. His disappearing act came as MSNBC faced calls from a feminist organization to fire him because of sexism and sexual misconduct allegations—after raised eyebrows over other on-air remarks.
A week ago, Matthews likened Sen Bernie Sanders’ (I-VT) victory in the Nevada caucuses to France falling to the Nazis in World War II. He apologized to Sanders—who is Jewish and whose family lost members in the Holocaust—but quickly shoved his foot in his mouth again.
After Tuesday’s Democratic debate, Matthews pressed Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) about why she confronted former New York City mayor Mike Bloomberg about accusations of sexist behavior in his past, including an allegation he told a pregnant employee to “kill it.”
“Why would he lie?” Matthews said of Bloomberg’s denial. “Because just to protect himself?”
Then, on Friday, columnist Laura Bassett wrote in a GQ article that Matthews harassed her in 2016, looking her over while she was getting her makeup done for an appearance and remarking, “Why haven’t I fallen in love with you yet?”
Bassett said Matthews continued to comment on her appearance, at one point telling the makeup artist, “Make sure you wipe this off her face after the show. We don’t make her up so some guy at a bar can look at her like this.”
It was reported in late 2017 that NBC had paid separation compensation to a producer who accused Matthews of sexually harassing her. The network claimed at the time that the host had been “formally reprimanded” over the incident.
On Friday night, Matthews had another cringe-worthy moment. While covering President Donald Trump’s South Carolina rally, he mistook South Carolina Democratic Senate candidate Jaime Harrison with footage of another black politician, Tim Scott (R-S.C.).
MSNBC did not immediately return a request for comment.