Two Capitol News Service staffers have been fired after the wire service supplied WTVJ, the NBC owned station in Miami, with a political story that included a graphic that read “Reprehensive Party of Florida” instead of “Republican Party of Florida.”
The segment aired on the 6 p.m. newscast Thursday. In response to a letter from the chairman of the Republican Party of Florida, who accused the station of “complete abdication of your station’s professional duty at best and slander at worst,” both Capitol News Service and WTVJ apologized for the incident. (Jim Romenesko has the full letter from the Florida GOP here.)
The Capitol News Service statement says the wire service “takes full responsibility” for the incident:
In a report in which we played a web ad by the Republican Party of Florida, our employees indicated it should have the on screen chyron “Reprehensive Party of Florida.” We deeply regret this incident. The people who made the error and reviewed it without catching it are no longer in our employ.
In a statement to Romenesko, WTVJ said they “sincerely regret the incident.”
We apologize to the Republican Party of Florida and to our viewers for our airing of a wrong graphic in a news story in last night’s 6 PM newscast. The story came to us from a news service we use out of Tallahassee that we have relied on for years with no issues. We do, however, know it was our responsibility to catch the graphic and we regret that we did not prevent it from airing. We are addressing this with our employees to ensure something like this doesn’t happen again.
The letter from the chairman of the Florida GOP was addressed to news director news director Migdalia Figueroa and general manager Larry Olevitch, who has been at the station’s helm for just four days.
The Florida incident comes on the heels of a spat between MSNBC and the RNC after the network suggested that conservatives wouldn’t like a Super Bowl ad featuring an interracial family.