Jemele Hill: People have a ‘definite right’ to still resent my Trump tweets
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ESPN host Jemele Hill said in an interview published Saturday that viewers who disliked her comments about President TrumpDonald TrumpTrump hails Arizona Senate for audit at Phoenix rally, slams governor Arkansas governor says it's 'disappointing' vaccinations have become 'political' Watch live: Trump attends rally in Phoenix MORE last year have a "definite right" to feel that way.

She told Variety that she is leaving SportsCenter to pursue an ESPN position where commentary is encouraged.

Hill said that many Trump supporters were unable to look past her comments slamming the president last year. In October, Hill tweeted that Trump was a "white supremacist," angering many of his supporters.


“That’s OK. They are allowed to feel that way. The people that don’t want to get past it won’t. They made their decision not to. It’s not something that bothers me. They have a definite right to feel that way. I don’t really think about that when I’m on television or as I’m reporting or writing," she said.

The ESPN personality was suspended from the network last year for twice violating its social media policies. The second incident was a tweet attacking Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones.

Hill added that if she was not a SportsCenter host, her tweets attacking the president probably would not have caused an uproar. 

“I’ve often wondered if the controversy would have been as significant as it was if I weren’t a ‘SportsCenter’ personality. I’m not saying it wouldn’t have been a headline. But would it have reached the White House? I’m not so sure about this," she added.

SportsCenter, Hill said, didn't have the right audience for her commentary, which she says is best suited for a less news-centered program.

“The function of ‘SportsCenter’ is not necessarily built for anchor commentary. So much of my career at ESPN — almost exclusively at some points — has been in commentary,” Hill told Variety. “They hired me as a columnist. I’ve been giving my opinion since day one.”

Hill announced on Friday that she would leave the show, dispelling rumors that she had been fired.

"I asked to leave the show — some of y'all probably need to read that sentence again — because of a strong desire to return to reporting, writing, and commentary," Hill tweeted Friday.