Watch: Ed Asner Asks Female MSNBC Anchor for a Kiss During Harvey Weinstein Discussion

During a discussion about rampant sexual harassment in Hollywood sparked by the recent Harvey Weinstein allegations, Ed Asner repeatedly asked a female MSNBC news anchor for a kiss.

Asner was a guest on MSNBC this afternoon during the 4:00 hour to promote his new book, The Grouchy Historian. At the very beginning of the interview, after Chris Jansing introduced Asner and said he starred on a show that was groundbreaking for women in the workplace, he said, “Well thank you. And not even a kiss? Oh my god.”

Asner brought up this kiss a second time when he was asked what should be done about people like Harvey Weinstein harassing and abusing women in Hollywood.

“I think the offenders have to be punished,” he said. “And I’m sure I’ve been guilty at times of using my overpowering masculinity to beg for kisses, like I did when I opened this conversation with you. But I know better than to push it, and Harvey Weinstein I guess didn’t know when to stop.”

Finally, at the end of the interview, Asner brought up the kiss a third time, saying that the anchor still owes him one. Jansing did not seem particularly amused.

“Okay, you’re going to get yourself in trouble, and with good reason,” she said.

This segment immediately began to earn some attention on Twitter, with viewers who were tuned into MSNBC at the time expressing their shock at what they had just witnessed live on the air.

Many pointed out that even if Asner was trying to be funny, an interview touching upon a Hollywood producer who has allegedly sexually harassed and raped numerous women over the course of several decades is not the time or the place for such humor.

As Chris Jansing mentioned on MSNBC, Ed Asner in the 1970s starred on The Mary Tyler Moore Show, a sitcom which centered around an independent, unmarried woman and that was considered to be revolutionary at the time. His career has primarily centered around television, though he has racked up some major film roles as well, such as voicing Carl Fredricksen in Disney’s Up.

Asner’s interview came as countless allegations of sexual abuse have been leveled at producer Harvey Weinstein, with actresses going on record as saying that Weinstein forced himself on them or attempted to proposition them after they arrived to what they thought was a work-related meeting. The harrowing stories have continued to pour in day by day, with one of the latest being from actress Cara Delevingne, who says that Weinstein tried to kiss her while blocking the door to his hotel room but that she managed to escape.

“I didn’t want to hurt his family,” Delevingne said, addressing why she did not speak out before now. “I felt guilty as if I did something wrong. I was also terrified that this sort of thing had happened to so many women I know but no one had said anything because of fear.”

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