Photo: Courtesy of MSNBC
A furious Keith Olbermann promised to sue Current TV and its founders, Al Gore and Joel Hyatt, tonight, after it was announced Friday that he had been fired from the network and replaced by former New York Gov. Eliot Spitzer.The abrupt ouster comes just barely a year after Olbermann joined Current in the wake of his acrimonious departure from MSNBC. In a surprisingly blunt statement announcing the move, Gore and Hyatt wrote that Current’s “values of respect, openness, collegiality, and loyalty to our viewers…are no longer reflected in our relationship with Keith Olbermann.”
Olbermann fired back quickly, tweeting that “it almost goes without saying that the claims against me implied in Current’s statement are untrue” and promising legal action against the network.
Olbermann also tweeted personal attacks against Gore and Hyatt, stating that “in due course, the truth of the ethics of Mr. Gore and Mr. Hyatt will come out.” He directed readers to a 1990 New York Times story about Hyatt, detailing how a federal judge found that Hyatt’s legal services company had illegally removed an employee after learning he had AIDS.
It is unclear what the case has to do with Olbermann’s situation at Current. The Los Angeles Times reports that Olbermann’s issues at the network have been about his contract and production values at the network; in his statement tonight, Olbermann accuses Gore and Hyatt of firing him for crude economic interest.
“Mr. Gore and Mr. Hyatt, instead of abiding by their promises and obligations and investing in a quality news program, finally thought it was more economical to try to get out of my contract,” the host tweeted.
Tensions between Olbermann and his Current employers have reportedly been brewing since at least November, despite Gore’s assurances this January that the relationship was going fine.
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