Published: Fri, December 01, 2017
Culture | By Wayne Carr

Garrison Keillor fired after allegations of 'inappropriate behavior'

Garrison Keillor fired after allegations of 'inappropriate behavior'

Garrison Keillor was reportedly spotted speaking with diners at a western MA restaurant just hours after he had been fired from Minnesota Public Radio following allegations of improper behavior at work. In a follow-up statement, he said he was sacked over "a story that I think is more interesting and more complicated than the version MPR heard". In an email to the Star Tribune, he says he meant to pat a woman on her back when she told him she was unhappy.

Former Minnesota Public Radio host Garrison Keillor defended embattled Senator Al Franken against sexual harassment allegations, just one day before he was sacked over similar allegations. Keillor ended his run hosting that show a year ago, but he still produced "The Writer's Almanac", which is carried by hundreds of public radio stations.

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"It's all kind of bewildering to me", Keillor reportedly said. MPR said the allegation stemmed from Keillor's conduct when he was producing and hosting "A Prairie Home Companion". The attorney leading the independent investigation has been conducting interviews and reviewing documents, and the investigation is still ongoing.

MPR said it was notified in October about an alleged incident involving Keillor while he was responsible for the production of A Prairie Home Companion. "Based on what we now know", MPR said, "there are no similar allegations involving other staff". Based on what we now know, there are no similar allegations involving other staff. "The program's current iteration hosted by Chris Thile will get a new name", the AP reports.

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The allegation is a devastating blow for fans of public radio, many of whom know Keillor's deep voice as well as they know a family member's. "While we appreciate the contributions Garrison has made to MPR and to all of public radio, we believe this decision is the right thing to do and is necessary to continue to earn the trust of our audiences, employees and supporters of our public service".

Coincidentally, Keillor wrote a column for the Washington Post this week defending Sen. He commented on Senator Al Franken, who who apologized this month after being accused of kissing and groping television personality Leeann Tweeden during a USO tour in 2006. Neither MPR nor Keillor has given any details about the allegation.

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