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Keith Olbermann 'Suspended Indefinitely' Without Pay

Keith Olbermann
Getty Images

MSNBC president Phil Griffin made the decision after learning Olbermann donated to three Democratic candidates this election cycle.

Keith Olbermann has been suspended without pay from MSNBC after it was learned he donated to three Democrats this election. Thomas Roberts will fill in for him Friday night.

"I became aware of Keith's political contributions late last night. Mindful of NBC News policy and standards, I have suspended him indefinitely without pay," MSNBC president Phil Griffin said in a statement.

The Countdown host donated $2,400 each to Reps. Raul Grijalva and Gabrielle Giffords of Arizona, and to Kentucky Senate candidate Jack Conway, Politico reported Friday.

NBC does not prohibit employees from making political donations, but it does require they get prior approval from executives.

Olbermann defended himself, saying in a statement: "I did not privately or publicly encourage anyone else to donate to these campaigns nor to any others in this election or any previous ones, nor have I previously donated to any political campaign at any level."

Olbermann and Griffin have long had a contentious relationship, The Huffington Post points out. Olbermann once told the New Yorker: "Phil thinks he's my boss," while Griffin sniped to New York magazine, "Keith doesn't run the show… I do a lot of things he doesn't like. I do a lot of things he does."

Olbermann recently suspended his Worst Persons segment on his MSNBC show.