The morning radio show is simulcast on MSNBC, and while Matthews' swear word was bleeped on the radio, it made it onto MSNBC while host Don Imus and Matthews were talking about Rudolph Giuliani as a potential president.
"We love good mayors because we love our cities and Giuliani's the city guy," Matthews said. "I'm so sick of Southern guys with ranches running this country. I want a guy to run for president who doesn have a [bleeping] -- I'm sorry -- a ranch. Wouldn't that be good, a guy who wasn't on the ranch during Katrina, he [Giuliani] was on the street corner answering questions [during 9/11]."
Imus then asked his producers if Matthews had been bleeped and asked Matthews why he was swearing on the air.
"I don't know," Matthews said. "I got excited."
"Chris immediately said he was sorry on the air, and we apologize to anyone who was offended," an MSNBC spokesman said. "Chris is a professional, but sometimes when he's talking to Imus he gets so comfortable that he feels like he's back on a street corner, chatting with a bunch of pals."
While the FCC has been cracking down on over-the-air obscenities, cable channels are not under the agency's jurisdiction.