Embattled O'Reilly takes his longest spring break in years

Posted April 14, 2017

Asked whether viewers could expect changes to his show after O'Reilly's return, the rep said he wasn't aware of any.

"I shouldn't be laughing, but it's just so freaky", O'Reilly, 67, said after watching the video. That's up 12 percent from the 3.31 million viewers he averaged the week before and up 28 percent compared to the same week in 2016.

But O'Reilly's fate may come down to his station's bottom line.

At last count, dozens of companies have pulled their ads from the program. Fox has filled the time with extra content.

As The New York Times points out, firing O'Reilly would alienate his millions of fans.

Even as advertisers' support for the show has dwindled, NPR's David Folkenflik reports that discontentment with O'Reilly and the Murdoch family - which owns Fox News - is building among other employees, as well.

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The investigation began after O'Reilly guest Wendy Walsh called called 21st Century Fox's anonymous hotline last week.

Joe Muto, a former Fox producer who used to work with O'Reilly, said he wouldn't be surprised if the vacation was O'Reilly's idea. Dana Perino, another Fox News host, is filling in for him, for at least some of the broadcasts.

"The Murdochs are going to have to look at the prospect of having Bill O'Reilly have good ratings [while] they can't make any money off [his show]", Sherman explained.

"Personally, I think he shouldn't have settled", the president said, suggesting O'Reilly should have fought the lawsuits against him in court. O'Reilly is stepping away from the show for a vacation as controversy continues to mount around sexual harassment claims.

Following substantial payments to settle sex harassment complaints against former Fox News chairman Roger Ailes - who left the company previous year with $40 million - employees are increasingly wary of executives' commitment to ending sexual harassment at the company, NPR reported.

At the time, Rupert Murdoch thanked Ailes for his "remarkable contribution" to the company; he left with an exit package worth $40 million.