NEW YORK – Motormouth Bill O’Reilly has been booted from the Fox News Channel after the network shelled out millions in hush money to women who said he sexually harassed them.
His immediate replacement appears to be Fox stalwart Tucker Carlson, whose show moves to O’Reilly’s coveted 8 p.m. time slot.
Parent company 21st Century Fox said in a statement Wednesday that “after a thorough and careful review of the allegations, the company and Bill O’Reilly have agreed that Bill O’Reilly will not be returning to the Fox News Channel.”
O’Reilly’s departure follows a tumultuous period for the right-wing news channel.
The firebrand host’s boss and benefactor, Roger Ailes, was also ensnared in lurid sex allegations that ultimately led to his departure last summer.
O’Reilly, a devout Catholic, has not commented on the split but was photographed shaking Pope Francis’ hand in Rome on Wednesday.
For two decades, the pugnacious host ruled the roost at the channel with his “no spin zone” on the network’s flagship program, the O’Reilly Factor.
But media baron Rupert Murdoch — who has always had a long fuse for internal scandal — decided he had had enough.