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Television

‘Hardball’ host harassment: Decades-old claim resurfaces

A spokesman for MSNBC on Sunday confirmed a report that a staffer at the news channel nearly two decades ago had been paid and left her job after she complained she was sexually harassed by "Hardball" host Chris Matthews.

The spokesman said the woman approached CNBC executives in 1999 to report Matthews made inappropriate comments about her in front of others. CNBC is a sister company of MSNBC.

The company declined to identify the comments, other than to say they were sophomoric, inappropriate, made in poor taste and never meant as propositions.

"In 1999, this matter was thoroughly reviewed and dealt with," the spokesman wrote to The Associated Press. "At that time, Matthews received a formal reprimand."

The person representing MSNBC spoke to The Associated Press on condition that his name will not be used due to the sensitive nature of the matter.

MSNBC said the payment was "separation-related compensation," which means the payment was tied to the woman leaving her job. The company would not release the payment amount, citing confidentiality. The company also declined to elaborate on the reprimand.

Attempts to reach Matthews on Sunday were unsuccessful.

The Daily Caller first reported the allegations on Saturday.

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