Megyn Kelly has unleashed a brutal assault on Bill O’Reilly and her former employer, Fox News, over their handling of sexual harassment claims.
Kelly specifically rejected O’Reilly’s recent assertion that there were no internal complaints at the network about his behavior. “O’Reilly’s suggestion that no one ever complained about his behavior is false. I know because I complained,” she said on her NBC show “Megyn Kelly Today.”
Speaking directly to the camera, Kelly also took a swipe at Fox News’s fearsome media relations chief Irena Briganti.
“At Fox News the media relations chief Irena Briganti, is known for her vindictiveness,” she said. “To this day she pushes negative articles on certain Ailes accusers … It gives me no pleasure to report such news about my former employer.”
Nathaniel Brown, SVP for 21st Century Fox, stood by Briganti in a terse statement to TheWrap: “Irena is a valued colleague and she has our full support.”
Kelly revealed a previously undisclosed email that she said she sent to then Fox News co-presidents Bill Shine and Jack Abernathy last November complaining about a TV appearance O’Reilly made disparaging Fox News employees who brought sexual harassment complaints.
“Perhaps it’s his own history of harassment of women which has, as you both know, resulted in payouts to more than one women, including recently, that blinded him to the folly of saying anything other than, ‘I am just so sorry for the women of this company, who never should have had to go through that,’” she wrote to her then-bosses.
The nearly four-minute monologue came in advance of an interview Kelly did with former Fox News analyst Juliet Huddy. Huddy is one of the many women who settled with Bill O’Reilly over the years and signed non-disclosure agreements to ensure their silence.
Huddy appeared with her lawyer on set to ensure that her answers remained within the bounds of that agreement.
In a statement, 21st Century Fox told TheWrap that it were committed to reforming its internal culture since beginning to oust longtime employees like Ailes, Bill Shine and O’Reilly.
“21st Century Fox has taken concerted action to transform Fox News, including installing new leaders, overhauling management and on-air talent, expanding training, and increasing the channels through which employees can report harassment or discrimination,” Brown said. “These changes come from the top, with Lachlan and James Murdoch personally leading the effort to promote civility and respect on the job, while maintaining the Company’s long-held commitment to a diverse, inclusive and creative workplace.”