Jemele Hill addresses the ‘elephant in the room’

Jemele Hill attending ESPN: The Party 2017 in Houston, Texas, in February.
John Salangsang/Invision/Associated Press/File
Jemele Hill attending ESPN: The Party 2017 in Houston, Texas, in February.

ESPN anchor Jemele Hill tweeted Thursday morning that her criticism of President Trump “painted ESPN in an unfair light,” but that the comments were her personal beliefs.

She said she wanted to address the “elephant in the room.”

“My regret is that my comments and the public way I made them painted ESPN in an unfair light,” she wrote. “My respect for the company and my colleagues remain unconditional.”


Hill, co-host of the 6 p.m. broadcast of “SportsCenter,” posted a series of tweets Monday night in a conversation with other Twitter users criticizing the president and calling him a white supremacist and a bigot.

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Hill’s comments drew backlash both from ESPN and from the White House. White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said Wednesday she believed the comments were a fireable offense.

“I’m not sure if he’s aware, but I think that’s one of the more outrageous comments that anyone could make, and certainly something that I think is a fireable offense by ESPN,” Sanders said during a White House press briefing, referring to the president.

After describing Hill’s comments as “inappropriate,”Tuesday, ESPN issued another statement Thursday accepting her apology.

“Jemele has a right to her personal opinions, but not to publicly share them on a platform that implies that she was in any way speaking on behalf of ESPN,” the network said. “She has acknowledged that her tweets crossed that line and has apologized for doing so. We accept her apology.”

Felicia Gans can be reached at Follow her on Twitter @FeliciaGans.