Updated: ABC Drops Breitbart

This story is getting more bizarre by the minute. Yesterday I reported that known liar and race-baiter Andrew Breitbart -- the inventor of the Shirley Sherrod controversy, among other dubious distinctions -- had been hired by ABC News to cover the election tonight from Arizona.

Well, that's what Breitbartsaid, via a post on his website, at least. After an initial backlash, ABC News tried to distance itself from him, releasing a statement assuring the world that Breitbart is not in any way affiliated with ABC News and that he had not been asked to analyze the results of the election. Instead, Breitbart was said to be "one of many voices on [the] air" tonight as part of an online forum, along with some other folks who would be around to fact-check him.

As if having to issue a public statement ensuring that a guest would be fact-checked wasn't a bad enough omen, now Breitbart appears to have started a flame war with ABC -- the network that ostensibly hired him. Confused? So is the entire internet.

According to Media Matters:

After the network moved to distance itself from the well-known propagandist who has trouble telling the truth, Breitbart lashed back claiming he was invited by ABC to be on TV, not just to participate in an online forum. ABC countered by claiming Breitbart doesn’t know how to read, and misconstrued the invitation via emails he received from the network.

But it gets weirder. Now Breitbart is in full-on attack mode, posting a series of rants on his websites against ABC and "the left," which  "loathe[s] free marketplaces of ideas." And yet, supposedly he's still appearing on ABC tonight?

Update (4:48 pm): ABC has come to its senses and canned Breitbart. What were they thinking in the first place? We'll never know. Cue even more outrage from the Breitbart camp...

Dear Mr. Breitbart,

We have spent the past several days trying to make clear to you your limited role as a participant in our digital town hall to be streamed on ABCNews.com and Facebook.   The post on your blog last Friday created a widespread impression that you would be analyzing the election on ABC News.   We made it as clear as possible as quickly as possible that you had been invited along with numerous others to participate in our digital town hall.  Instead of clarifying your role, you posted a blog on Sunday evening in which you continued to claim a bigger role in our coverage.  As we are still unable to agree on your role, we feel it best for you not to participate. 


Andrew Morse


AlterNet / By Lauren Kelley

Posted at November 2, 2010, 5:55am

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