In a Friday surprise, MSNBC political analyst Craig Crawford announced on his CQ Politics blog Trail Mix today that he is leaving the network.
“Three months short of my current contract,” he wrote, “I sent the following to the boss, [MSNBC President] Phil Griffin: ‘Phil, Just wanted to give you the heads up that my situation with MSNBC has become so unrewarding for me that I’ve decided to move on. — Craig'”
In an email, Crawford tells TVNewser, “This was a long time coming. I haven’t felt like a good fit for MSNBC since the presidential campaign, and their hard turn toward point-of-view programming.
“So many of my booking calls lately have been for segments bashing Sarah Palin, for instance. I was boring myself, and surely the viewers.
“But no particular event brought this on, just my desire to try other outlets and have more fun. I have a fine and rewarding home with the great folks at CQ-Roll Call. I enjoy blogging for them and doing our web videos.
“Perhaps I’m not cut out to be a cable cowboy anymore, dunno. Prefer remaining independent and do my own thing for any channel, including MSNBC, that books me. After a dozen years with one channel, I’d rather play the field for a while.”
Crawford also had written more in the Trail Mix commenter threads about his decision: “I simply could not any longer endure being a cartoon player for lefty games…” And via Twitter: “Sorry folks, don’t blame me for leavin MSNBC. For whatever reason they chose to ignore me, and I must move on.”
In another blog comment, Crawford singled out MSNBC’s Chris Matthews for criticism. “I have never and never will forgive Chris for calling me a racist after the West Virginia primary (the last time I will ever go on air with him). Probably should have resigned then and there, but better late than never.”
Crawford had originally written on his blog that he would appear Monday on FNC’s Fox & Friends. A Fox spokesperson, though, tells TVNewser he is not booked on the program — and the information is no longer posted on Trail Mix.