The sexual harassment and abuse allegations against President Donald Trump’s favorite news channel, Fox News, seem to be gradually piling up — and the network’s primetime host Bill O’Reilly appears to be at the center of it.
Shortly after The New York Times published a bombshell report alleging O'Reilly and his employer paid about $13 million to five women to settle claims of sexual harassment and other inappropriate behavior, Attorney Lisa Bloom, who represents another O’Reilly accuser Wendy Walsh, ripped the conservative network for its handling of such matters.
“There needs to be an independent investigation of sexual harassment at Fox News,” Bloom insisted told CNN’s Brian Stelter. “It’s not like people are accusing him of ‘I slipped and fell on your property and I’m suing you.’ It’s always sexual harassment. And you mean to tell me, woman after woman for 12 or 13 years, they’ve all conspired together, women who don’t know each other, to accuse him of sexual harassment?
"How many women have to come forward? By my count, it’s already been dozens and dozens of women who have been reported in reputable media to have come out against Roger Ailes and now Bill O’Reilly and others.”
Former Fox News Chairman and CEO Roger Ailes stepped down from his position last year in July following a sexual harassment lawsuit from former “Fox & Friends” co-host Gretchen Carlson.
“Do women’s careers mean anything at Fox News, do the laws of sexual harassment ever get enforced there? We don’t see of that,” Bloom continued. “In my opinion, this network is the Bill Cosby of corporate America. Women over and over again are driven out.”
Several women, including those who worked for O’Reilly or appeared as guests on his show, have accused the political analyst of sexual harassment and inappropriate behavior.
Juliet Huddy, who hosted “Fox & Friends Weekend” before moving on to “The O’Reilly Factor,” said the show’s host not only made unwanted advances toward her on multiple occasions, but even tried to force himself on her when she visited his house.
She reportedly received a “six-figure” settlement from the network.
Similarly, former Fox News host Andrea Tantaros also filed a lawsuit claiming the host of the right-wing show tried to lure her into a “very private” meeting on Long Island where he could see her “wild side.” She also called the network a “sex-fueled, Playboy Mansion-like cult, steeped in intimidation, indecency and misogyny.”
Both of the women, including three other previously unknown accusers, were named in The New York Times story.
Recently, two African-American Fox employees accused the company of racial discrimination as well.
The lawsuit, filed in the State Supreme Court in Bronx, plaintiffs Tichaona Brown and Tabrese Wright, worked as payroll manager and payroll coordinator respectively, alleged the company’s longtime comptroller, Judith Slater, verbally abused them.
Both women reportedly refused to accept a settlement offer. Fox News claimed it fired Slater after learning of her misconduct.
Banner and thumbnail credit: Reuters, Mike Segar