Suspended-MSNBCer David Shuster is coming out swinging today as he lashes back against a story written about him in the newspaper’s gossip column “Yeas & Nays” Friday morning. He called the column’s sources “bull sh*t”.
The situation has grown so intense that Charlie Spiering, the Examiner‘s Online Community Editor, about an hour ago posted a counter story to the “Yeas & Nays” item from this morning saying that Shuster was playing for his company’s softball team.
In a letter to the Examiner, Shuster grew angry about being called a “dork” by a blind source and the newspaper’s reporting that he’s the only one on the team who wears an actual uniform. Shuster insists he does not wear a “uniform.” He also demanded to know who called him a “geek.”
Behind the scenes, Shuster first wrote “Yeas & Nays” Columnist Tara Palmeri a direct message on her Twitter account asking for her e-mail, which she gave him. Shuster then wrote her three allegedly “threatening” (not physically so) e-mails and cc’d the paper’s chief political correspondent Byron York on them all. He demanded that the item on him be taken down. Obviously that’s not happening. York said internally today that he does not personally know Shuster.
MSNBC had no comment on the matter.
Read Shuster’s entire letter to the Examiner after the jump. Trust me, you don’t want to miss this one…
An excerpt from Spiering’s story:
Before the column appeared, Shuster did not respond to e-mailed requests for comment. After the column appeared online, Shuster sent this e-mail to The Washington Examiner:
1) I don’t wear a “uniform.” I wear shorts and the WRC/NBC t-shirt just like everybody else. There is one player on our team who wears softball pants. But he plays left field. I play center. And I’ve never EVER worn softball pants. So, your claim about me wearing a uniform is false. And I now ask you to identify who it was that claimed I was a “geek,” given that they were false in their claim about what I wear. [For the record, the Examiner quoted a player as saying, “what a dork.”]
(2) I have not played in the metropolitan media softball league for “two years” as you wrote… I’ve played in it for 20. I’ve been in the league since 1990, with the exception of ’95 and ’96 when I was working in Arkansas. My history in the media league tracks who I worked for… CNN from 90-94, Fox News Channel softball team from 96-2001; NBC News channel from 2002-2006; WRC/NBC from 2007 to present. So again, your source for how long I’ve played in the co-ed rec league got it wrong. Please publicly identify that source. [The Examiner, like MSNBC and CNN, does not identify confidential sources.]
(3) You claim that a week after I was suspended, I spoke to a fellow softball player or players about being on “paid vacation.” I’ve never said any such thing to anybody in the media softball league. And the only conversations I’ve had about my status are with my agent, my immediate family, and my closest friends. None of them play or interact with anybody in the media softball league.
Please correct the article immediately. It is accurate that I continue to play on the NBC/WRC “Peacock” softball team. It is also accurate that we won the championship last year (and the year before) and that like many of of my teammates, I hoisted the trophy after we won. It is also accurate that I batted 5th last weekend, though that was only in the 2nd game. In the first game, I batted my usual 4th spot.
Next time, if you want to write about the media softball league and can’t reach me by deadline, please call somebody/anybody on our team. It wouldn’t have taken more than a few minutes for you to realize that your reporting sources were bull sh*t.