MSNBC host Ed Schultz — a pro-union pundit with a national podium — has received a total of $252,000 in payments from union groups in 2012 and 2013, Labor Department numbers revealed.
The payments were made primarily by AFL-CIO electrical and postal workers, Politico reported. And they were sent along with the stipulation they go toward “political” or “representational” uses, Politico found.
Union-affiliated auto workers alone paid Ed Schultz Broadcasting LLC in 2012 a total of $72,000, Politico reported.
MSNBC spokeswoman Lauren Skowronski justified the payments as advertising dollars for Mr. Schultz’s radio show, website and speaking gigs. On top of that, all the funds from his speaking engagements go to charity — an MSNBC policy, she said.
“Independent from MSNBC, Ed’s radio show and website sell advertising to a variety of clients, both union and non-union,” she said, Politico reported. “Also … Ed has donated the honorarium from speaking engagements to charity.”
Mr. Schultz has a long and lucrative history with union dollars. He was paid $199,000 in 2011, Politico reported. And after that relationship was revealed, Mr. Schultz made clear on his show that his speech-related payments go to charity.
One charity that Mr. Schultz identified as a recipient for his 2011 speeches, the American Cancer Society, confirmed that it received $100,000 from him — or about half the amount he received from unions for that year, Politico reported.