Bill O’Reilly believes his firing from Fox News was nothing more than a “hit job.”
O’Reilly, let go following reports that the network paid nearly $ 13 million to women who accused the talking head of sexual harassment, gave his first public interview Friday — with his one-time colleague Glenn Beck.
“This was a hit,” O’Reilly said. “In the weeks to come, we’re gonna be able to explain some of it.”
O’Reilly, appearing on Beck’s The Blaze radio program, failed to provide further details, but hinted at taking legal action against his enemies down the road.
“It has to do with destroying voices that the far left and the organized left-wing cabal doesn’t like,” he said. “That’s the general tone. I can’t get specific. There’s a lot of legality here.”
O’Reilly didn’t address the allegations of sexual harassment that led dozens of advertisers to pull out of “The O’Reilly Factor” amid the growing scandal.
Fox has been embroiled in controversy since widespread reports of sexual harassment led to the ouster of CEO Roger Ailes last year.
The network’s parent company shelled out $ 10 million to settle pending and potential lawsuits stemming from allegations of sexual harassment at the embattled network, according to a Securities and Exchange Commission filing earlier this week.
And that’s just for the first quarter of this year.
The payout is just a portion of $ 45 million 21st Century Fox paid to settle sexual harassment cases over a nine-month period ending March 31.
That amount does not include the money Fox shelled out on behalf of axed anchor O’Reilly. Nor does it include the $ 25 million Fox was estimated to have paid the cable news host in a severance package after he was dropped from his nightly show amid sexual harassment complaints and lawsuits.
O’Reilly insisted on Friday that he didn’t harbor any ill will toward his former employer.
“It’s their prerogative. They can do whatever they want. They run the company and they own the company,” he said. “So, if that’s what they felt was best for the company, I’m not going to hammer them.”
Beck later invited O’Reilly to work for his network The Blaze — in exchange for some grub.
“I’ll pay him in sandwiches,” Beck said, joking that he couldn’t afford to pay O’Reilly what he made at Fox.