For any news spectators who felt dismayed after realizing that the Justin Trudeau-Matthew Perry cage match would never happen, hope still sits on the horizon. This is a pretty good matchup, too! Fox News’ Bill O’Reilly vs. CNN’s Don Lemon. A battle of the talking heads, if you will. Everything began
innocently politically enough when O’Reilly tweeted out an accusation that Lemon “refuses to cover Susan Rice story.”
This tweet linked an O’Reilly “Video of the Day,” which was an abbreviated clip from Monday night’s Lemon episode that O’Reilly believes “downplayed the explosive allegations” against former Obama National Security Advisor Susan Rice. Only that’s not really what happened. Instead, Lemon refused to “aid and abet” Trump’s month-long embrace of wiretapping allegations by subscribing to a half-story about what was — in all likelihood — a legal use of “incidental” surveillance. (This may have also involved revealing names of subjects who held foreign intelligence value.)
Lemon did discuss Rice later during the episode, but the purpose of his introduction was to assure viewers that “we will not insult your intelligence by pretending” that Rice’s actions substantiated Trump’s wiretapping claims. And when O’Reilly fired his shot at Lemon, the CNN host didn’t hesitate to viciously drag O’Reilly for choosing not to address the sexual harassment allegations against him on his show:
Ouch. Lemon, of course, is referring to how O’Reilly ignored the allegations on Monday night’s episode of The O’Reilly Factor. The resulting lawsuits have reportedly amounted to a combined total of $13 million paid by O’Reilly and Fox News to five different women. This news has prompted at least eighteen advertisers to back away from The O’Reilly Factor while another accuser came forward with more allegations.
A lingering question remains … will Lemon and O’Reilly come for each other on their shows tonight? Should be exciting to watch.
UPDATE: Fox News has issued a statement from Paul Rittenberg, Executive Vice President of Advertising Sales: “We value our partners and are working with them to address their current concerns about the O’Reilly Factor. At this time, the ad buys of those clients have been re-expressed into other FNC programs.”