A sports reporter fired by the New York Post is now suing the paper for firing him without cause, a report says.
Sports writer Bart Hubbuch reported on his Twitter account that the paper fired him for his anti-Trump tweets. Hubbuch complained in his announcement that he posted his tweets on his own time.
An important status update: pic.twitter.com/kjZVOWjoRr
— Bart Hubbuch (@BartHubbuch) January 31, 2017
The writer referred to a series of tweets in which he called the election of Donald Trump a “national tragedy,” and compared the election to the terror attacks on 9/11 and the Japanese attack on U.S. forces at Pearl Harbor causing the U.S. to enter WWII.
At the time, the Post explained that Hubbuch engaged in “unprofessional conduct.”
“We expect our reporters to interact with the public, including on social media, in a professional manner. Unfortunately, Mr. Hubbuch has engaged in a pattern of unprofessional conduct and exhibited serious lack of judgment, including most recently showing disrespect for the victims of Pearl Harbor and 9/11,” the paper’s statement read according to NBC Sports.
Now Hubbuch insists in his filing that the Post violated New York labor laws.
The fired writer’s attorney said the paper violated New York Labor Law Section 201-d, which makes it “unlawful for any employer . . . to discharge from employment . . . an individual . . . because of . . . an individual’s legal recreational activities outside work hours, off of the employer’s premises and without use of the employer’s equipment or other property,” NBC reported.
Hubbuch again notes that he posted his tweets on his own time, from his private computer, and did not use company time or resources to attack Trump.
The lawsuit also pointedly notes that the New York Post constantly engages in “tabloid style” sensationalism and his tweets are mild by comparison.
“In keeping with its tabloid style, the Post has sensationalized the actual or perceived the fault of democratically elected leaders by running covers showing them dressed up like tyrants responsible for murder, torture and repression,” Hubbuch’s filing says.
Hubbuch also claims he was told he would not be fired if he apologized for the tweets, which he did, but was fired anyway. He also charges that his employer fired him to curry favor with Donald Trump.
The argument comes down to whether the paper had the right to fire him for things he did on his own time.
Hubbuch demands a monetary award for damages, as well as reinstatement to his job.
Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston or email the author at firstname.lastname@example.org.