Bill O’Reilly Accusation Was FOX News Sex Scandal 1.0

2004 settlement only buried the scandal that exploded twelve years later

Manny Otiko

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Bill O’Reilly (The World Affairs Council/Flickr)

I’ve often written about the FOX News Channel sex scandals. But I mistakenly called the Big One in 2016, the one that kicked it off. I was wrong. The first sex scandal was the one involving Bill O’Reilly and producer Andrea Mackris in 2004.

He got to keep his job; she got a $9 million settlement and had to sign an NDA agreement. FNC finally canned O’Reilly when he was revealed to be still sexually harassing women in 2016. That was when the more prominent Fox News Sex Scandal involving accusations by former anchor Gretchen Carlson exploded. FNC Sex Scandal 2.0 also took down former CEO Roger Ailes and predator Eric Bolling.

However, Mackris was blackballed from the media industry and trashed by news outlets. Mackris, who came from a conservative background, accused O’Reilly of calling her up on the phone and talking dirty to her while he masturbated. He also suggested a threesome when she brought a friend to dinner. Mackris recently spoke about her experience with The Daily Beast.

“He was talking about vibrators and masturbating and he needed a younger lover. It came out of left field,” said Mackris. “He had never spoken to me like that. I’m raised by a very conservative Christian family. We didn’t really talk about the birds and the bees — kind of ‘we were dropped by the stork.’ Nobody talked like this. I certainly never had conversations like this with any guys I had known. I barely dated growing up. Daniel [her former fiancé] was my first real boyfriend. We’re pretty conservative people when it comes to sex and stuff.”

Now she says, she doesn’t care about the NDA agreement.

We’re now on Fox News Sex Scandal 3.0, involving former anchor Ed Henry raping a co-worker who was handcuffed to a chair. I’m sure this isn’t over!

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Manny Otiko

Manny Otiko writes about race, politics and sports. He has been published in Salon and LA Weekly. Follow him on Twitter @mannyotiko.