Being cast on Dancing with the Stars isn’t exactly the same as being hired to anchor World News Tonight, but Sean Spicer’s hiring is still causing some concern inside ABC News. Even DWTS long-time host has some strong feelings on the matter, saying he had hoped the show would be “free of inevitably divisive bookings.”

And there is even stronger reaction on the Twittersphere:

NY Times TV critic James Poniewozik calls Spicer’s hiring a “disgrace” saying:

To treat Spicer, and his reason for notoriety, as a harmless joke is to whitewash the harm of what he did, which was to say things so absurdly false that he invited his political side to join him in denying their own eyeballs, to encourage people to believe that facts don’t matter if they hurt your team.

To put him on a silly reality show is to say that he committed a silly offense and that you’re silly if you still make a big deal about it — everybody lies, everybody does what they’ve got to do to get by, everything’s a joke, just stop being such a fussbudget and enjoy the show.

CNN says internally some ABC employees are uncomfortable with Spicer “working” for the network, especially considering the crossover DWTS has with Good Morning America:

The staffers expressed a range of opinions — some said there was just “eye rolling” going on. A couple said they didn’t care about the Spicer pick. One remarked, “How long do you really think he’s going to last?” But others said they were pissed.”It’s a slap in the face to those of us who had to deal with his baloney and the consequences of the ongoing lies and disinformation campaign at the White House,” one of the staffers said.Spicer was “horrible” to “so many of us,” another ABC source said. “It’s disgusting to think he is getting on the show and getting paid by our company.”

As for official reaction from ABC, the show’s executive producer Andrew Llinares would only say: “We’ve got a great and diverse cast. We are excited about the season.” 

Spicer, who will reportedly get a six-figure salary for his appearance, also released a statement to The Hollywood Reporter saying:

“I hope it will be a politics-free zone. My hope is that at the end of the season, Tom looks back on this and realizes what a great example it was of being able to bring people of really diverse backgrounds together to have fun with each other, engage in a real civil and respectful way and maybe show millions of Americans how we can get back to that kind of interaction.”