MSNBC is suspending its simulcast of Don Imus' radio program for two weeks, as public anger built over his racist remark about the Rutgers University women's basketball team. The suspension will begin April 16, so that it falls after a radio-thon for Imus' various charities that was scheduled for Thursday and Friday. In a statement issued late Monday, MSNBC parent NBC News said Imus has expressed remorse and "made a commitment to listen all those who have raised legitimate expression of outrage" over his calling the Rutgers University women's basketball team "nappy-headed ho's" on April 4.

After talking with NBC News executives Monday, Imus promised to "change the discourse on his program moving forward." NBC News added that its future relationship with Imus "is contingent on his ability to live up to his word."

On his Tuesday broadcast, Imus called the suspension "appropriate" and said he plans to "serve it with some dignity," yet maintained, "I am not a racist.... What I did was make a stupid, idiotic mistake in a comedy context."

Imus appeared on Rev. Al Sharpton's syndicated radio program earlier Monday, after Sharpton and other black activists and organizations called for Imus to be fired. Even after Imus apologized again, Sharpton did not back down from his position, saying, "You must be held accountable for this." Sharpton also turned down an invitation to appear on Imus' show unless it was "his last show" ever.

Imus wants to meet with the members of the Rutgers team and their parents to apologize personally, and explained to viewers in an emotional 13-minute apology on his show that he wasn't a racist, but "a good person who said a bad thing." His next stop on what's likely to become an apology tour is NBC's Today on Tuesday.

But the true test Imus will face is whether his high-profile guests - which often include Washington journalists, NBC News correspondents and anchors, and politicians - will continue to appear on the show. The scheduled guests for Tuesday were Bill Maher and CBS News analyst Jeff Greenfield. - Reporting by Stephen Battaglio