Former Fox News host Bill O’Reilly said that amid the “chaotic hysteria” surrounding recent allegations of sexual misconduct against men in power, the public is too quickly rushing to judgment based on press accounts.
He made the comments Thursday on WMAL’s “Mornings On The Mall.”
“It’s conviction by headline,” said O’Reilly, who faced multiple allegations of sexual harassment at Fox News.
O’Reilly says there is a “hysteria” surrounding allegations of sexual misconduct, and that this hysteria will only become more intense.
“If you look at evidence, documented evidence like the police sting in New York City on Weinstein, then certainly you can come to conclusions about what did or did not happen, and Americans do that all the time,” O’Reilly stated.
“But right now, we have a big, chaotic hysteria, and rather than standing back and saying, ‘all right, each case is different, each case is unique,’ we’re not doing that,” O’Reilly continued. “It’s being used for political purposes, it’s being used to destroy careers, it’s being used to punish people, it’s being used used to get money, all kinds of things in play.”
“We’re going to see it on Capitol Hill. Donald Trump is going to be back in this. It’s going to be really, really horrendous for the country coming forward. You can just see it,” he stated.
O’Reilly says justice goes both ways in these types of allegations.
“Justice, justice for the victims, and justice if the allegations are false. That’s what every fair-minded American should be seeking,” O’Reilly says.
On Larry O’Connor’s radio show, Brent Bozell, founder of the Media Research Center, claimed that O’Reilly sounded like O.J. Simpson because the former Fox News host is not filing any lawsuits.
“Well, I am,” O’Reilly says. “And our strategy has changed. But while I was sitting in the chair in Fox News I could not, I could not do that.”
“So you are bringing suit against your accusers?” cohost Vince Coglianese asked.
“I have only filed one suit with my team. … And we’re ready to go, because at this point I work for myself. I’m on billoreilly.com, and we have presented unbelievable evidence on our website, exculpatory evidence,” O’Reilly says, “that we also gave to the New York Times, which they did not print, so if someone is going to come at me now, they’re going to wind up in court.”
“There are people who have been mistreated in the workplace for centuries, and that should never happen. I’m in a union … and we have protections in our union that nobody should be abused in the workplace,” O’Reilly continued. “I feel very, very strongly that people who are mistreated should have a protection mechanism.”
“In the case of the allegations against you, and those in which you’ve settled, were there any times, did you ever mistreat anyone in the workplace?” Coglianese asked.
“I did not,” O’Reilly responded.
When asked about the accusations against Roy Moore, O’Reilly responded, “I do not know Mr. Moore, I’ve never spoken with him, he denies the accusations, the women that have come forth look credible to me as a journalist. If I were in Alabama, I would not vote for him. But again, I’m not in there, there’s not stuff under oath, so that’s all I can say about that.”
O’Reilly was then asked about how to handle incidents like these.
“I just don’t know, because the press will not stop. It’s conviction by headline. And the lawyers know that. There’s an industry now that files these suits. For every one you hear, there are a thousand you don’t hear. I just don’t know what the solution is in a free society, but people need to be aware that judgments made on press accounts are wrong,” O’Reilly stated.