Choosing a particularly interesting moment to take some leisure time, Fox host Bill O’Reilly is set to take a brief hiatus from his much-boycotted show “The O’Reilly Factor,” purportedly to go on vacation.
On his Tuesday show, O’Reilly noted that he would be taking a vacation, one which he claims was scheduled in the Fall of 2016. Sure.
What likely happened is that Fox executives, concerned about the continued controversy surrounding O’Reilly, urged the host to take some time off to allow the negative press to die down. Unfortunately for O’Reilly and his bill-paying employer, the dearth of advertisers is not likely to disappear in a couple short weeks.
In fact, it would not be surprising at all if we never saw O’Reilly on his show again. After all, a network is willing to forgive quite a bit if you are their top money-maker, but when more than half of your advertisers abandon ship? There goes your meal ticket.
Still, a Fox News spokesperson confirmed with New York Magazine that O’Reilly would be returning to the network on April 24, just shy of two weeks from now.
O’Reilly’s troubles began weeks ago when the New York Times published a scathing article all about the Fox host’s history of sexual harassment. All told, the article noted, Fox had shelled out $13 million since 2004 to settle harassment suits against O’Reilly by a handful of former Fox employees.
As a result of that article, dozens and dozens of advertisers pulled their spots from “The O’Reilly Factor,” favoring their public image over a lucrative ad spot. 21st Century Fox also announced this week that they would be launching an investigation into yet another allegation against O’Reilly.
Regardless of whether or not O’Reilly does once again darken the doorway of Fox on the 24th or any other time, the message is clear: the network is unsettled and the sexual predator O’Reilly is shaken.