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UPDATED: Fox News is hunting for its Bill O’Reilly exit strategy

A protest sign left outside News Corp headquarters. (Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

CNN reports that Fox News is working to devise a “graceful” exit strategy to disconnect from host Bill O’Reilly, a man whose inability to take polite disinterest (or forceful rejection) as an answer has caused the network a number of problems of late. 21st Century Fox’s board of directors is scheduled to meet on Thursday, with O’Reilly’s fate on the agenda, according to multiple anonymous sources connected to the network.

O’Reilly is currently on “vacation” from The O’Reilly Factor, after advertisers began fleeing his program in the wake of a New York Times report chronicling the numerous harassment lawsuits that have been lodged against him over the years. According to New York magazine, the Murdoch family is apparently leaning toward not having him return to the air.


Meanwhile, yet another woman came forward with accusations of harassment today, saying O’Reilly used to “grunt at her like a wild boar” and call her “hot chocolate,” because the woman in question is black, and Bill O’Reilly is a fucking creep. Besides throwing more fuel on the fire, the woman’s anonymous claim—assisted by lawyer Lisa Bloom, who’s also representing radio personality Wendy Walsh, who says she was shut out of the company after denying O’Reilly’s advances—also invalidates the host’s frequent assertions that no one has ever called the Fox News harassment tipline on him.

The woman says she’s isn’t looking for money from one of O’Reilly’s frequent settlements, just to provide more information about what working near the host as a woman is like. Nevertheless, O’Reilly’s attorney, Marc E. Kasowitz—who also represents President Donald Trump in his ongoing efforts to make suing him for sexual harassment legally unconstitutional—accused her of seeking to profit from donations, while also questioning why anyone would use an anonymous tipline that exists for the exact purposes of bringing a powerful man’s bad behavior to light. “It is outrageous that an allegation from an anonymous person about something that purportedly happened a decade ago is being treated as fact,” Kasowitz said, “Especially when there is an obviously orchestrated campaign by activists and lawyers to destroy Mr. O’Reilly and enrich themselves through publicity-driven donations.”

UPDATE: A new report in New York Magazine cites anonymous sources saying Fox executives are holding “emergency meetings” to decide how best to sever ties with O’Reilly before he returns from vacation in Italy on April 24. On the agenda are reportedly discussions of whether O’Reilly will be allowed to give a farewell address to his audience, who will replace him, and the matter of severance pay. O’Reilly recently signed a new multiyear contract worth more than $20 million, meaning the bastard is likely to walk away from this a rich(er) man.

[via The Hollywood Reporter]


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