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Joe Scarborough Gets the Keith Olbermann Treatment

Keith Olbermann, Joe Scarborough Marcel Thomas/FilmMagic; Jamie McCarthy/WireImage.com

Good morning bye.

Proving it's an equal-opportunity wrist-slapper, MSNBC has sidelined conservative yakker Joe Scarborough for two days for making campaign contributions without first getting prior permission, per network policy.

Somewhere, Keith Olbermann is chuckling.

MORE: Keith Olbermann relishes return to MSNBC

Earlier this month, Olbermann got the hook for the same kind of gaffe.

In a statement, MSNBC President Phil Griffin said that the Morning Joe host came clean this morning, admitting he had made eight political donations of $500 each between 2004 and 2008 to local candidates from his home state of Florida, three of whom were friends of his and one his brother.

"In my conversation with Joe two weeks ago, he did not recall these contributions," Griffin said. "Since he did not seek or receive prior approval for these contributions, Joe understands that I will be suspending him for violating our policy."

That suspension is without pay and will last until Wednesday, said Griffin, who added that "as Joe recognizes, it is critical that we enforce our standards and policies."

Then again, some might suggest that Scarborough's wrist-slap is different because when Olbermann was suspended, it was "indefinitely." He wound up being reinstated after two days following a massive outcry from viewers.

For his part, Scarborough owned up to his mistake and promised it will never happen again.

"I recognize that I have a responsibility to honor the guidelines and conditions of my employment, and I regret that I failed to do so in this matter," he said in a statement. "I apologize to MSNBC and to anyone who has been negatively affected by my actions."

It's worth noting that Scarborough has good reason to have a clean slate. He is also being touted as the bottom half of a potential independent third party ticket should New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg decide to run for president in 2012.

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