A veteran California broadcast journalist resigned from of KESQ-TV on Friday, less than a month after he wrote a lengthy Facebook post in defense of Brett Kavanaugh, the Supreme Court's newest associate justice.
The resignation of Kris Long is effectively immediately, Gulf California Broadcast Company General Manager Jerry Upham stated on the TV station’s website. Long was a longtime evening anchor at the CBS affiliate in Palm Springs.
Kris Long has resigned from Local 2 https://t.co/fRyxsDrCUz— Cactus Hugs (@Cactus Hugs)1538786989.0
What did he write?
According to a screenshot of the post, Long on Sept. 17 wrote on his personal Facebook page, in part: “...You are beyond dreaming if you think 17 year old boys are not going to misbehave from time to time as they begin to attempt relationships with the opposite sex. That is just the way we animals are made!”
He also said that is not an excuse for a man to try to force himself on a woman.
“One thing is certain," Long wrote. "I will never be nominated to the Supreme Court. Were that ever to happen, I have to admit they might have to enlarge the Senate hearing room to accommodate all the young women from the mid- to late-1960s who felt that I had tried to go a bit too far!” he wrote.
Long went on to categorize the sexual misconduct accusations against Kavanaugh as "political maneuverings."
Long later deleted the post and replaced it with an apology, according to published reports. He was reportedly not on air that night and had remained off air.
In September, the TV station stated: “Due to the nature of the post, we have chosen not to address the topic any further and apologize for any offense this has caused. We are addressing this issue internally.”
Opinions expressed in Long’s post were his own, the TV station stated, adding that it strives to offer viewers objective reporting.
Long had not been on the air since that night. Other than a brief statement, the station did not explain what was happening.
The station’s resignation announcement included a statement from Long, which read: “I want to thank those who have offered support and apologize again for any I may have offended. I hope to return to the news business in the future."
Long’s career included reports “on every major story that has impacted the Coachella Valley, from presidential visits to the line of duty deaths of two Palm Springs police officers. Kris has also received a number of awards for his reporting, including a local Emmy for his coverage of the Salton Sea dilemma,” according to the TV station.
Long initially stood by what he wrote on Facebook, but told The Desert Sun he should have emphasized that he condemns rape. He also told the news outlet he can understand why some sexual assault victims do not immediately report the crime.
“I wish I hadn’t a written (the post) because it’s caused me a lot of headache," Long told the newspaper.
Kavanaugh was confirmed to the Supreme Court and sworn in on Saturday. In September, California professor Christine Blasey Ford publicly accused Kavanaugh of unwanted sexual contact at a high school party. An FBI investigation concluded that the incident, which happened more than 35 years ago, could not be corroborated.
Three women, including Blasey Ford, publicly accused Kavanaugh. He has denied all of the allegations.
Long’s resignation comes as journalist was fired Friday from an NBC affiliate, KTTC-TV Minnesota, after he wore a “Make America Great Again” baseball cap to cover a rally for President Donald Trump.
Another news outlet reportedly took photos of multimedia journalist James Bunner wearing the red MAGA cap, which were then circulated on Twitter.