One of CNN’s top pundits is now on leave after accidentally exposing himself to colleagues on a Zoom call.
Jeffrey Toobin, who is also a staff writer at the New Yorker, has received a slap on the wrist after he was caught masturbating in the middle of an “election simulation.”
The New Yorker said Monday that Toobin has been suspended from the magazine, while CNN confirmed that he is taking “some time off while he deals with a personal issue.”
“Dear All, As you may have read in various news reports today, one of our writers, Jeff Toobin, was suspended after an incident on a Zoom call last week,” wrote The New Yorker’s Dave Remnick. “Please be assured that we take such matters seriously and that we are looking into it. Best, David.”
Zoom call incident
The Incident occurred during a video call that included some of the New Yorker’s top writers, like #MeToo advocate Jane Mayer, as well as staff from WNYC radio.
Toobin was playing the role of the courts in an “election simulation” game when two people said they saw him masturbating, they told Vice magazine anonymously. After Republicans and Democrats took a break to strategize, Toobin appeared to be on a separate Zoom call, they said.
He lowered the camera and exposed himself, before he left the chat and returned moments later, like nothing happened.
“I made an embarrassingly stupid mistake, believing I was off-camera,’’ Toobin told Vice.
“I believed I was not visible on Zoom. I thought no one on the Zoom call could see me. I thought I had muted the Zoom video,’’ he said. “I apologize to my wife, family, friends and co-workers.’’
The journalist and author, who is married, was previously caught up in a scandal in 2009 when he impregnated a woman 14 years his junior and allegedly offered money for an abortion. The latest incident provoked widespread mockery.
In light of Toobin’s disgusting act, many have recalled his attacks on Brett Kavanaugh during the justice’s scorched earth confirmation, in which Toobin baselessly accused the judge of sexual assault. “The idea that it’s all made up seems sort of preposterous at this point,” Toobin said at the time.
Why hasn’t Toobin been fired?