As NewsBusters reported first, MSNBC anchor Martin Bashir insisted on his May 31 program that Sarah Palin's Northeast bus tour amounted to a "breach in federal law."
After a number of sites linked to the original NewsBusters piece, Bashir responded today to the "abusive messages" he's allegedly endured in the fallout of his controversial remarks, although he avoided addressing his bizarre claim that the former Alaska governor violated federal law by flying the American flag on her tour bus. [Video embedded after the page break.]
"And judging by the number of abusive messages to myself and my family online and on my office voicemail, there's been quite the reaction to my comment regarding Sarah Palin and the real purpose of her bus tour," complained Bashir.
The British-born Bashir went on to flash his green card to prove to his alleged detractors that he is indeed a legal resident: "For the avoidance of any doubt, I want to assure you that I am a legal, permanent resident of the United States. This is my green card."
While the former ABC Nightline anchor doubled down on his contention that Palin is only interested in making money, he explicitly refused to address his most egregious comment.
On Tuesday, Bashir questioned Palin's patriotism and suggested she's a criminal: "In fact, the whole thing could be in breach of a federal law because the United States Flag Code establishes important rules for the use and display of the stars and stripes, the flag of the United States."
But on Thursday, Bashir pretended to have never uttered such offensive bile, even though it was those comments that were the most controversial.
Still waiting for you to "Clear the Air," Martin.
--Alex Fitzsimmons is a News Analysis intern at the Media Research Center. Click here to follow him on Twitter.
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