This might be the most awkward TV moment of the year.

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In a CNBC segment today, “Squawk On The Street”, the panel discussed how few companies have openly gay CEOs, despite the support for the LGBT community being as firm and far-reaching, especially from corporate correspondents. During this segment, New York Times columnist James Stewart was detailing some of his interactions with one of the few openly gay big company CEOs, the former CEO of BP John Browne. As an anecdote, fellow panelist Simon Hobbs chimed in and said:

I think Tim Cook is open about the fact that he’s gay at the head of Apple, isn’t he?

The momentary silence that followed was deafening, and the cover up comments were just as drastic.


“Ohhhhhhhh, dear”, said one panelist. Another member of the panel tried to think quick on their feet with, “Oh dear, was that an error?”

Tim Cook, the CEO of Apple, has been a public and avid supporter of the LGBT community, especially on his seldom used personal Twitter account.

cook lgbt

You can watch video of the incident here.