USDA employee offered new job after firing over bogus racist video - Cleveland 19 News Cleveland, OH

Sorry: USDA employee offered new job after firing over bogus racist video

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(WASHINGTON) - Fired USDA employee, Shirley Sherrod has an apology from the White House, as well as a new job offer to consider.

Shirley Sherrod is still deciding whether to go back to the Department of Agriculture.

"She has a unique set of skills which I think would lend themselves to assisting USDA as well deal with our civil rights chapter," said Tom Vilsack, Agriculture Department Secretary.

Secretary Vilsack offered to re-hire the 62 year-old Wednesday for a new role - just days after firing her over this speech.

"And here I was faced with having to help a white person save their land," said Sherrod.

The edited clip -- posted online by conservative bloggers -- appeared to show Sherrod making racist remarks. But it soon became clear the comments were taken out of context and that there was actually nothing racist about the speech at all.

"Without a doubt Ms. Sherrod is owed an apology. I would do so on behalf of this administration," said Robert Gibbs, White House Press Secretary.

Sherrod claims she resigned under pressure from the White House. But Vilsack maintains the Obama administration had nothing to do with his decision.

"This was my decision, and I made it in haste," said Vilsack.

Sherrod says she tried to get the White House to watch the full tape.

"Had that been done, we wouldn't be sitting here having this conversation today," said Sherrod.

But some lawmakers are also blaming the media for jumping the gun.

"This issue is not about race. This issue is about reporting and responding," said (D-SC) Rep. James Clyburn.

And they say, avoiding a rush to judgment.

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