Congressman Joe Walsh speaks during a Chicago Tea Party meeting on Dec. 8, 2011 in Chicago.
Mark Black/AP

Ex-Rep. Joe Walsh claims he was forced off his radio show over racial slurs


Former Illinois Republican Rep. Joe Walsh claims he was kicked off his own radio show Thursday over a discussion about “racial slurs.”

Walsh took to Twitter Thursday evening to sound off on the incident, saying he was suspended from the station “until further notice” and will learn about any repercussions on Friday.

Representatives from WIND, the Chicago station that broadcasts “The Joe Walsh Show,” told msnbc: “Yesterday AM 560 The Answer’s Joe Walsh conducted a segment of his show regarding the recent controversy about the name of the Washington Redskins.  During the segment Joe intended to cite several common racial slurs as examples.  He did not in any way use them in a defamatory or derogatory manner, simply as examples.  However, AM 560 The Answer did not allow them to go on the air. AM 560 The Answer has a policy of not using certain words on the air that are highly inflammatory and offensive even in the context of a discussion of why those words are offensive.  We will continue that policy.  Joe Walsh will be back on air tonight (Friday) at 5 pm.”

Walsh, who has a reputation for controversial rhetoric, said on Twitter that his comments related to the Washington Redskins debate and how the name compares to other racial slurs.

The United States Patent and Trademark Office canceled six federal trademark registrations for the football team earlier this week. Politicians, civil rights organizations and sports leaders continued the decades-old debate about the meaning of the term “redskin,” which some say possesses negative racial connotations.

Walsh also mentioned on Twitter that the station’s management cut to a commercial when he said “other words” besides “Redskins.”

The former congressman was elected in 2010. He was defeated two years later by Lt. Col. Tammy Duckworth, a Democrat, Iraq War veteran and double amputee. Prior to Duckworth’s victory, Walsh criticized her repeatedly for using her military service as part of her campaign for a seat in the House. Earlier that year, Walsh was caught on camera using racially charged language to insult President Barack Obama. He also previously said radical Muslims were “trying to kill Americans every week.”