MSNBC host Ed Schultz is being sued by a broadcast engineer in the NBC News Washington Bureau who claims he helped Schultz get into TV.
Michael Queen is suing Schultz in federal court for at least $100,000, claiming he paved the way for Schultz’s MSNBC show. Queen claims he approached Schultz in January 2008 and asked him if he had anybody helping him try to land a TV show.
“No,” Schultz is quoted as saying in the complaint. “Now you’re it!” Queen set up the taping of a “McLaughlin Group”-style program at WUSA-TV, the CBS affiliate in Washington, DC.
Schultz’s lawyer, Jeffrey Landa tells TVNewser, Queen initially represented himself as Michael Anderson, so as not to run into problems at NBC. Schultz eventually reimbursed Queen $12,000 for the pilot expenses. “Ed paid him in full for every cent he spent,” says Landa. “We’re going to aggressively defend against [the suit] and aggressively counterclaim.”
Landa says there was never a contract between Schultz and Queen. “There is one email that Ed sent years ago that basically said if Queen got him the show on WUSA, he wouldn’t do the show without him,” says Landa. But that show never got picked up.