MSNBC host Melissa Harris-Perry apologized on Tuesday for suggesting that former Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney’s adopted black grandchild marry Kanye West and Kim Kardashian’s daughter North West.
On her show, Melissa showed a photo of Romney’s extended family featuring newly adopted black grandson Kieran James Romney and asked her panel of guests including actress Pia Glenn and comedian Dean Obeidallah to come up with creative captions.
After a series of jokes revolving around the fact that there was only one black person in the Mitt Romney family photo, Harris-Perry commented that she wanted to see a wedding between Kieran and baby North West in the year 2040.
“Can you imagine Mitt Romney and Kanye West as in-laws?” she said. Obeidallah joined in.
“I think this picture is great. It really sums up the diversity of the Republican Party, the RNC. At the convention, they find the one black person,” he said.
Sensing the “joke” did not sit well with a majority of the viewers, the red-faced host apologized on her Twitter account:
I am sorry. Without reservation or qualification. I apologize to the Romney family. #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, 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
However, news website Mediaite pointed out another provocative segment of the show when the guest hosts discussed the Republican tendency to name-check President Abraham Lincoln, who “was kinda racist,” according to one panelist. Harris-Perry then commented that Abraham Lincoln was her “favorite kind of racist.” For the complete statement, watch the video below: