Defenders and Detractors Keep Bill O’Reilly in the Headlines

By Chris Ariens 

A new allegation of Bill O’Reilly‘s storytelling has surfaced. Liberal website Media Matters headlines a story, O’Reilly Lied About Suicide Of JFK Assassination Figure, an allegation first reported two years ago on the website

Meanwhile, the Daily Beast’s Lloyd Grove talks with several defenders of the bombastic Fox News host, while the Washington Post‘s Paul Farhi talks with a communications expert about how the whole mess may be viewed inside Fox News. The network released a statement that “Chairman & CEO Roger Ailes and all senior management are in full support of O’Reilly.” From Farhi:

That suggests O’Reilly and Ailes may even view the controversy surrounding their star not as a crisis but as a brand-building opportunity, said a New York communications specialist, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because he works with several TV networks. The executive said O’Reilly’s attack strategy is in keeping with his pugilistic image and with Fox News’ self-promotion as the “fair and balanced” alternative to the liberal media. By making the avowedly liberal Corn and Mother Jones the issue, “Fox News has turned this into another partisan shouting match,” he said.

While that may be true, O’Reilly would sincerely like this all to be over. As he said on his show Monday night, “I want to stop this now. I hope we can stop it. I really do.”