Melissa Harris-Perry Breaks Down During Apology for Romney Grandson Flap

'I intended to say positive and celebratory things about it'

Melissa Harris-Perry Breaks Down On-Air While Addressing Kieran Romney Controversy (Mediaite)

A perfect storm of slow news and cultural provocation elevated Melissa Harris-Perry‘s New Year’s weekend segment, which used Kieran Romney‘s appearance in a Romney family photo as a setup for jokes about diversity, into a full-blown media conflagration. That firestorm has now roiled into a second weekend. Former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney (R-MA) is expected to address the controversy tomorrow on Fox News Sunday, and Melissa Harris Perry addressed it on air for the first time on the Saturday morning edition of the Melissa Harris Perry show.

Having a weekend show carries with it the blessing, or the curse, of adding air to the embers of controversies that a weekday show could quickly smother. Last Sunday, Harris-Perry moderated a panel that set upon a Romney family photo as the pivot point for jokes about Republican lack of diversity. Harris-Perry’s own remarks were relatively innocuous, but panelist Pia Glenn sang “One of these things is not like the others, one of these things just isn’t the same” upon the photo’s introduction, and comedian Dean Obeidallah joked “I think this picture is great. It really sums up the diversity of the Republican party, the RNC. At the convention, they find the one black person.”

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