Embattled Fox News host Bill O’Reilly announced tonight that he is taking a vacation. O’Reilly’s decision to go off the air in the midst of a sexual harassment scandal and advertiser boycott arguably has the appearance of a suspension, but O’Reilly worked to dispel that notion. He announced that he’d scheduled his trip “last fall” — well before the New York Times reported he paid $13 million to settle harassment claims. A Fox News spokesperson confirmed O’Reilly will return on April 24.
But according to four network sources, there’s talk inside Fox News that tonight’s show could be his last. Lawyers for the law firm Paul, Weiss, hired last summer by 21st Century Fox to investigate Roger Ailes, are currently doing a “deep dive” investigation into O’Reilly’s behavior. They’re focused now on sexual harassment claims by O’Reilly guest Wendy Walsh after she reported her claims via the company’s anonymous hotline.
I fully endorse this move. The heat is on and Bill O’Reilly is taking a much needed vacation. Whether he Bill Cosby-ed these women or not, you can’t deny that Bill is a smart man. When the pressure is on, pack your bags and travel closer to the equator.
The question becomes, will Bill O’Reilly have a job when he returns? This isn’t great optics. It looks like he’s going on a forced hiatus until the sexual harassment checks clear. In actuality this is a classic case of ‘you’re gonna miss me when I’m gone’. Once the ratings tank, the O’Reilly Factor will be back by Easter.
Plus, if he doesn’t come back, you know Fox News is going to just randomly give the job to like, Tomi Lahren and we’ll all have to suffer for Bill’s sins.
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