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About (Late) Last Night: Lawrence O' Donnell says 'NBC has created a monster and it is called Donald Trump' [Video]

April 28, 2011 |  9:28 am

In the wake of President Obama's news conference in conjunction with the release of his birth certificate Thursday, most commentators took the opportunity to blast Donald Trump, the quasi-presidential candidate and "Celebrity Apprentice" star who's taken up the mantle of birtherism. But MSNBC host Lawrence O'Donnell took a different tack.

On his show "The Last Word," O'Donnell blasted Trump's employers -- and his own corporate cousins -- at NBC. "NBC has created a monster, and it is called Donald Trump," he began.

Like many others, O'Donnell is convinced that Trump's flirtation with a presidential run is nothing but a shameless grab for publicity. "Trump needs media attention the way the rest of us need air to breathe. He will obviously say and do anything to get media attention."

Once Trump announces he's not running -- which O'Donnell accepts as a given -- "He will be forced to retake his place at the bottom of the celebrity pile with Snooki and the Situation."

In his own Wednesday morning news conference in New Hampshire, Trump said he could not announce his candidacy until "Celebrity Apprentice" winds down May 22. O'Donnell debunked this claim as well, arguing that Trump was not subject to equal-time claims because he hosts an entertainment show, and because simply announcing a candidacy is not the same thing as becoming a legally qualified one.

His conclusion? "Trump is now hiding behind NBC when asked the single most important question in front of him ... and NBC is allowing him to hide behind NBC."

O'Donnell urged his peers in the media to call NBC and ask what the network's plans were for next season with regards to Trump, whom he also called the "most deranged egomaniac" in the network's history. "Those NBC executives should not be allowed to survive another day of involuntary entanglement in the Trump hatred campaign without being asked everything they know about Donald Trump's professional commitments and performance obligations to NBC," he said.

The network announces its fall line-up on May 16, but O'Donnell says the time is now for NBC to distance itself. "NBC has created a monster who is using his NBC fame to spew hatred reeking with racist overtones and undertones about the president of the United States. NBC can no longer stand idly by, not for one more day."

Do you agree?

-- Meredith Blake