But neither Thomas' apology nor her status as an esteemed member of the White House Press Corps warded off calls for further action.
Abraham Foxman, national director of the Anti Defamation League, said Sunday that her apology "does not go far enough."
"Her remarks were outrageous, offensive and inappropriate, especially since she uttered them on a day the White House had set aside to celebrate the extraordinary accomplishments of American Jews during Jewish America Heritage Month," Foxman said.
"We believe Thomas needs to make a more forceful and sincere apology for the pain her remarks have caused," he said.
Fellow columnists, such as Time Magazine's Joe Klein, had also called for her removal from her front-row position at the White House press briefings.
The White House Correspondents Association issued a statement today despite saying it was not its role to "police the speech of our members or colleagues."
"Helen Thomas' comments were indefensible and the White House Correspondents Association board firmly dissociates itself from them," the statement read. "Many in our profession who have known Helen for years were saddened by the comments, which were especially unfortunate in light of her role as a trail blazer on the White House beat."
The statement said there would be a special meeting of the association board Thursday on whether it is "appropriate for an opinion columnist to have a front row seat in the WH briefing room."
Thomas had also come under criticism for her pointed questioning of U.S. support of Israel to Gibbs a day after a violent clash between Israeli commandos and international activists aboard a flotilla of six ships purportedly filled with humanitarian aid headed for the Gaza Strip.
Former George W. Bush press secretary Ari Fleischer had gone further, calling for Hearst to fire Thomas.
"She should lose her job over this," Fleischer said in an email to the Huffington Post. "As someone who is Jewish, and as someone who worked with her and used to like her, I find this appalling.
"She is advocating religious cleansing. How can Hearst stand by her? If a journalist, or a columnist, said the same thing about blacks or Hispanics, they would already have lost their jobs."