Fired news anchor Rick Sanchez breaks his silence about that shocking radio rant that cost him his job at CNN.
Sanchez tells INSIDE EDITION's Deborah Norville, "Deborah, I screwed up. I just screwed up."
In the radio interview that cost Sanchez his job, he said, "I think Jon Stewart is a bigot. I'm telling you that everybody who runs CNN is a lot like Stewart and a lot of people who run all the other networks are a lot like Stewart, and to imply that somehow they, the people in this country who are Jewish, are an oppressed minority? Yeah."
Today Rick Sanchez squirms just thinking about what he said.
Norville said, "This was supposed to be a great period for you. What hapenned?"
"I just mangled it. I just mangled the words and I allowed myself to get into an argument with my interviewer that took me in an area that allowed me to say some things that I didn't even mean. Comments that don't even represent who I am," said Sanchez.
He told Norville he called Jon Stewart to personally apologize. He now has another name for the man he called a bigot.
"You know that guy's a real mensch. He had every reason to be mad at me and to attack me, and instead he defended me," said Sanchez.
"And forgave you," added Norville.
"And forgave me," said Sanchez.
But not everyone is so forgiving. The rant was a black eye for CNN in the cable news wars and has brought a torrent of scorn on Sanchez.
On Late Night with David Letterman, Letterman joked, "Top 10 Rick Sanchez excuses. #3, Trying to impress Mel Gibson."
On the Tonight Show, Jay Leno joked, "He said that on a satellite radio show. If he had said it on his own show on CNN he wouldn't have been fired because nobody would have heard it."
On the cover of his new book, Conventional Idiocy, he's holding a TV plug as if he'd just yanked it out of the wall.
Norville asked, "In a million years would you have predicted that, in talking about this book you could have pulled the plug on your own career?"
"I'm pulling the plug on what television news has become. I don't like television news right now," said Sanchez.
He hopes one day to return to CNN, but agrees he deserved to be fired, saying, "I made the mistake. They didn't make the mistake. I made the mistake and I deserve whatever it is that comes with it."