George Stephanopoulos
Stephanopoulos will not moderate the Republican presidential debate after donating $75,000 to the Clinton Foundation. Reuters

ABC News anchor George Stephanopoulos issued a mea culpa after he admitted to donating $75,000 to the Clinton Foundation during a three-year span. Now, the co-host of "Good Morning America" will not play any role in a planned Republican presidential primary debate next winter, the Associated Press reported Thursday.

Stephanopoulos, 54, said he thought his contributions were a matter of public record, but said he was sorry. "However, in hindsight, I should have taken the extra step of personally disclosing my donations to my employer and to the viewers on the air during the recent news stories about the foundation," the anchor said. "I apologize."

He continued his mea culpa by adding he didn’t want to put his network in a bad light. “I’m sorry because I don’t want anything to compromise my integrity or the standards of ABC News,” he said, according to the New York Times. “I don’t want to do anything that would raise questions in the minds of our viewers. I’m sorry all of that has happened.”

Though he will not be involved in the 2016 presidential debate, he will continue to cover it, Stephanopoulos said during a phone interview with CNN Money. "I don't want to be a distraction. … I'm not going to moderate that debate."

As for his job with ABC, he does not have to worry about facing any repercussions for his donations. The network said they stood behind him in a statement Thursday. "He made charitable donations to the foundation to support a cause he cares about deeply and believed his contributions were a matter of public record," the network said. "He should have taken the extra step to notify us and our viewers during the recent news reports about the Foundation," ABC continued. "He's admitted to an honest mistake and apologized for that omission.”

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