NBC News staffers concerned about their network's credibility are fuming over a decision to hire White House press secretary Jen Psaki as an MSNBC talking head, according to CNN.
The outrage caused NBC News president Noah Oppenheim to hold an impromptu Friday phone call with staffers from the Washington DC desk so he could address the matter - where he reportedly tried to emphasize the distinction between NBC News' hard news vs. MSNBC's opinion programming - and told them to 'ignore the noise' and 'continue doing their jobs as normal.'
"Here's what he was saying: They have perspective programming. This was done on the perspective programming side. Not anything that reflects on NBC News," one of the people who was on the call explained. "People wanted answers on what NBC's role was in this and NBC News had no role in this."
Psaki's tentative deal with MSNBC perturbed staffers because news of the negotiations between her and the network came while she is still in her post as White House press secretary.
Additionally, instead of hiring Psaki into the more typical post-White House role, such as a political analyst offering opinion and analysis on another person's program, MSNBC intends to make her a host for a show that will stream on its Peacock platform. -CNN
It appears that Oppenheim's advice to ignore the hire went unheeded - as NBC News' chief White House correspondent repeatedly asked Psaki about the ethics related to her jump to MSNBC while continuing to serve as press secretary.
In a statement, Psaki said: "I have always gone over and above the stringent ethical and legal requirements of the Biden administration and I take that very seriously," adding "And as a standard for every employee of the White House, I have received rigorous ethics counseling, including as it relates to any future employment."