CNN legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin was back on air Thursday for the first time since being fired from The New Yorker for masturbating while on a Zoom call.
In a segment with anchor Alisyn Camerota that lasted nearly nine minutes, Toobin apologized for the incident that occurred last October and said he is “trying to become the person that people can trust again.”
“To quote Jay Leno, what the hell were you thinking?,” Camerota said to her colleague.
“Well, obviously, I wasn’t thinking very well or very much, and it was something that was inexplicable to me. I think one point — I wouldn’t exactly say in my defense, because nothing is really in my defense. I didn’t think I was on the call. I didn’t think other people could see me.”
“I thought that I had turned off the Zoom call. Now, that’s not a defense. This was deeply moronic and indefensible. But I mean, that — that is part of — that is part of the story. And you know, I have spent the seven subsequent months, miserable months in my life, I can certainly confess, trying to be a better person. I mean, in therapy, trying to do some public service, working in a food bank, which I certainly am going to continue to do, working on a new book about the Oklahoma City bombing, but I am trying to become the kind of person that people can trust again,” Toobin went on to say.
“One of the ironies of this whole incident is that for decades, you have covered the bad judgment and sexual proclivities of public figures and politicians like Bill Clinton and Anthony Weiner and Elliot Spitzer and Donald Trump, and I could go on. And so, you know, of course it begs the question. Why didn’t you have better judgment?,” Camerota later asked. (RELATED: ‘He Provided A Public Service’: Joy Behar Thanks Jeffrey Toobin For Distracting From Trump)
“Because I’m a flawed human being who makes mistakes,” Toobin responded. “And you know, there is no defense for my conduct. The only issue is what should be the consequences, and the “New Yorker” made one decision about the consequences. CNN made a different decision, fortunately, for which I’m very grateful.”
Toobin concluded by saying there are no more “skeletons” that are going to come out against him, saying “I don’t think there is any — anything further that’s going to come out.”
The October incident was also not the first time Toobin had come under fire for sexual improprieties.
In 2009, he had a child as the result of an extra-marital affair with attorney Casey Greenfield, the daughter of one of his CNN colleagues at the time.
Toobin reportedly offered her money for an abortion and initially denied paternity until a judge forced him to pay child support.