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Longtime C-SPAN anchor Steve Scully to depart for bipartisan think tank

Published: in USA news by .

The network placed Scully on administrative leave last year after he admitted to lying about an exchange on social media with Anthony Scaramucci.


C-SPAN anchor Steve Scully, who was suspended from the public affairs network for three months last year for falsely claiming his Twitter feed had been hacked, will begin a new job at the Bipartisan Policy Center next month.

Scully’s final day at C-SPAN will be July 2, and he will start work on July 6 as senior vice president at the BPC, a Washington-based think tank, he confirmed to POLITICO. Axios first reported the news of Scully’s hiring.

“For 30 years, C-SPAN has given me a front row seat to history, allowing me to explain politics and public policy to our loyal audience,” Scully said in a statement. “I am excited about my next chapter at the Bipartisan Policy Center to help shape that story as well. If ever there was a time where all sides need to reach across the aisle, it is now! I am honored the BPC will allow me to play a part in this important civic process.”

C-SPAN placed Scully on administrative leave last October after he admitted to lying about an exchange on social media with Anthony Scaramucci, a former communications director to former President Donald Trump who has since become a fierce Trump critic. Scully returned to work in January.

The controversy unfolded shortly after Scully — who served as senior executive producer and political editor for C-SPAN — was tapped last September by the Commission on Presidential Debates as moderator for the second televised forum between Trump and then-Democratic nominee Joe Biden. That debate, originally scheduled to take place less than three weeks before Election Day, was to be staged in Miami as a town-hall style event.

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Although Scully acted as an understudy moderator during the 2016 general election cycle and was widely regarded in Washington as an even-keeled, nonpartisan broadcaster, the Trump campaign complained about his selection by the commission and the other reporters chosen as moderators for the 2020 debates.

The Trump campaign had previously submitted to the commission a list of two dozen suggested moderators — consisting mostly of Fox News personalities and other conservative pundits — and had argued for the scheduling of a fourth debate last September to account for a possible spike in pandemic-related early voting. The commission rejected that request.

The planned second debate never took place, however, after the commission announced the event would be conducted virtually in the wake of Trump’s Covid-19 diagnosis. Trump balked at the format change, and the two campaigns traded dueling proposals to realign the debate schedule. Ultimately, the candidates participated in separate, prime-time town hall events on network television.

Around the same time, Trump stepped up his attacks on Scully after a post appeared on the journalist’s Twitter account asking Scaramucci whether he should “respond to trump.” Scully and the debate commission leadership maintained his account was hacked, but Scully said in a statement a week later that the hacking claim was untrue.

“These actions have let down a lot of people, including my colleagues at C-SPAN, where I have worked for the past 30 years, professional colleagues in the media, and the team at the Commission on Presidential Debates,” Scully said at the time. “I ask for their forgiveness as I try to move forward in a moment of reflection and disappointment in myself.”

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Source: Politics, Policy, Political News Top Stories https://www.politico.com/news/2021/06/22/steve-scully-to-depart-c-span-495529

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