Former Fox News host Bill O’Reilly dismissed as “lies and smear” the details in a New York Times report saying 21st Century Fox had signed O’Reilly to a contract extension months after O’Reilly reached a $32 million sexual harassment settlement with longtime network analyst Lis Wiehl.
The settlement, revealed by the Times in an article Saturday, was one of several such deals involving O’Reilly. The controversial commentator was re-upped in February only to be dismissed by Fox in April after the Times reported on some of them.
O’Reilly was combative and unapologetic on Twitter.
“My investigative team has done a superb job in exposing the lies and smear,” O’Reilly tweeted late Saturday. “I will speak with you on Monday.”
He also posted a statement from spokesman Mark Fabiani saying the Times “once again… maliciously smeared Bill O’Reilly, this time even failing to print a sworn affidavit from his former lawyer, Lis Wiehl, repudiating all allegations.”
Fabiani accused the Times of ignoring sworn evidence in favor of “unsubstantiated allegations, anonymous sources and incomplete leaked or stolen documents.”
The Times quickly rejected Fabiani’s claims. Reporter Michael S. Schmidt, who wrote the story with Emily Steel, tweeted that O’Reilly “falsely says our story didn’t mention affidavit Lise Wiehl signed” and showing two such mentions in the article.
The Times also issued a statement through the Associated Press: “Mr. Fabiani addresses everything but what the story actually says. This article, like our previous reporting on the subject, is accurate and deeply reported and we welcome any challenge to the facts.”
SOURCE: John Bacon