On MSNBC, Civil Rights Attorney Explains That "At Any Other Company, Bill O'Reilly Would Be Fired"
Lisa Bloom: "At Any Other Company, Bill O'Reilly Would Be Fired," "They Have No Interest In Getting Rid Of This Man, Who's Accused Of Being A Serial Harasser"
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From the April 3 edition of MSNBC's All In With Chris Hayes:
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CHRIS HAYES (HOST): Roger Ailes, who -- probably the most powerful man in American media, or one of them, leaving Fox News in disgrace, although with quite a sizable severance package after a series of reports have came out, allegation after allegation after allegation. What does your reporting suggest about the posture of Fox towards O'Reilly, now that you have five settlements on the record and other ones possibly out there as lawsuits now?
MICHAEL SCHMIDT: Well, we know that Mr. O'Reilly's contract has been extended. Fox extended it knowing that he had reached many of these settlements. The important thing about the settlements is that two of them have been reached since Mr. Ailes left, and Fox knew about those settlements when they extended his contract recently.
So, the question is, and a lot of people have asked me, but Fox has not answered, which is "Why is Mr. O'Reilly being treated differently than Mr. Ailes?" And I think what Fox would probably say is that they don't think the cases that were brought in recent months against Mr. O'Reilly, which he settled, have any merit. And they've been able to dismiss them.
HAYES: Lisa, do you want to respond to that?
LISA BLOOM: Listen, it's been since 2004 with Andrea Mackris, who I knew at the time, what she went through in a public case against Bill O'Reilly, where it seemed pretty clear that she had recordings of him making sexually explicit comments about what he wanted to do in the shower with her, all the way until the present.
You know, at any other company, Bill O'Reilly would be fired. And today, I called upon the State Division of Human Rights in New York and the New York City Human Rights Commission to, on their own motion, do an independent investigation into sexual harassment at Fox News, because they simply treat these payments as the cost of doing business.
They have no interest in getting rid of this man, who's accused of being a serial harasser, and instead the women are driven out, over and over again. They're not just harassed, they say, they're driven out of their careers. This is a very serious harm to women's rights, and I hope the state agencies will do an investigation.