One America News Network CEO Robert Herring says he has retracted a lucrative job offer to Bill O’Reilly that could have paid the former Fox News star more than $25 million a year.
In a tweet Tuesday, Herring wrote: “We are pulling offer to @billoreilly, it could have paid him more than he made at Fox. We wish him luck. #OANN.”
O’Reilly reportedly had a contract worth $25 million a year before he was forced out at the Fox News Channel in April following claims of sexual harassment. Five women who had accused the host of sexual harassment were paid a settlement of $13 million, according to the New York Times. At least 50 advertisers removed their ads from “The O’Reilly Factor.” O’Reilly was ousted on April 19 and was given a large severance package.
WND requested comment from Herring, but a message left with him hadn’t been returned at the time of this report.
Herring told Mediaite OANN was “ready to move on” after O’Reilly and his agent failed to respond to the offer. OANN and O’Reilly had direct discussions about the offer, according to Mediaite.
Herring told the site O’Reilly “would have been very good” at OANN.
In an email to the Hill, Herring said: “We contacted him in April, he sent us to his agent. They told us they were not ready to decide what they would do.
“They were to take a meeting in late May. We sent them a solid proposal first week in June. They have not responded, so we pulled our offer so we can pursue other talent. He has been talking about starting his own endeavor, and we wish him luck and would help him if we can.”
The former Fox News personality is reportedly preparing to launch a new online video project.
As WND reported, O’Reilly made the big announcement that he plans to launch out on his own during the first stop pf the “The Spin Stops Here” tour in Long Island.
“I am starting my own operation,” he revealed over the weekend in his first public appearance since he was taken off the air by Fox. “We are going to do that.”
BillOReilly.com, he explained, will beta test a half-hour newscast.
“We will go into a studio and here it will look like ‘The Factor.’ … It’s basically an experiment to see how many people are going to want this service,” he said.
He had been the subject of recruiting efforts by other networks that lean conservative after he left Fox and took with him the talent that made his “The O’Reilly Factor” the No. 1 rated show on cable news during its prime-time slot.
He said the program eventually “will compete directly with Fox News.”
“That’s coming and will be here before September in a robust form. But I suspect there will be another network maybe merging with us. There will be a network that rises up because the numbers for Fox are going down,” he said. “A bunch of people are looking to compete with Fox because there’s a perception” of decline.
In addition to O’Reilly’s departure, Fox has weathered a whirlwind of brutal shakeups in the past year. Former chairman Roger Ailes died last month after stepping down during the Republican National Convention last summer amid accusations of widespread sexual harassment.
Former Fox News hosts Gretchen Carlson, Andrea Tantaros and Megyn Kelly, who left the network to work for NBC, claimed harassment. Ailes, a longtime political operative and media visionary, built Fox News with Rupert Murdoch beginning in 1996 and led the cable channel to ratings dominance.
Murdoch’s sons, who reportedly are much farther left in their politics, now run the network.
O’Reilly’s 30-minute pilot broadcast will be available on his website and resemble his former program “The O’Reilly Factor,” he said.