Bill O’Reilly is pointing the finger at God for the allegations of sexual harassment against him.
“You know, am I mad at God? Yeah I’m mad at him. I wish I had more protection. I wish this stuff didn’t happen,” O’Reilly said on his web series, “No Spin News,” according to CNN.
The former Fox News anchor has adamantly denied wrongdoing after a New York Times article revealed he paid a $32 million sexual harassment settlement – the largest of at least six.
O’Reilly, who claimed The Times “maliciously smeared” him, said he settled with his accusers to protect his children.
He mentioned his children again in his defense on Monday, saying, “If I die tomorrow and I get an opportunity, I’ll say, ‘Why’d you guys work me over like that? Didn’t [you] know my children were going to be punished? And they’re innocent.’”
In another interview with the Times, O’Reilly cited the sexual harassment allegations agaist former Fox anchor Eric Bolling as the reason behind his son Eric Bolling Jr.’s death after the 19-year-old was found dead just hours after the network announced his father was being let go.
After Bolling slammed O’Reilly’s comments as ‘inappropriate’, he apologized late Monday night in a statement on Twitter clarifying, “The message I tried to send was that allegations harm kids. Nothing more.”
O’Reilly, who also defended himself to the sympathetic ears of Glenn Beck and Sean Hannity, allegedly harassed legal analyst Lis Wiehl.
Wiehl alleged O’Reilly sent her gay pornography and forced her into a nonconsensual sexual relationship, The Times reported.
News of the $32 million settlement came six months after another bombshell Times report revealed O’Reilly settled with five other women for a total of $13 million.
Weeks later, the top-rated cable news host followed the footsteps of executive Roger Ailes, who was ousted after numerous allegations of sexual harassment and misconduct.
O’Reilly was called out by his former network anchors Gretchen Carlson and Megyn Kelly, both of whom claim to have been the victims of sexual harassment during their time at Fox.
Carlson, who filed the lawsuit against Ailes that eventually led to his downfall, responded to O’Reilly’s claims of innocence on Twitter, writing, “Nobody pays $32m for false allegations – nobody.”
Kelly also addressed the allegations against O’Reilly on her morning show, saying she filed a complaint about him with Fox nearly a year ago.
“This must stop. The abuse of women, the shaming of them, the threatening, the retaliation. The silencing of them after the fact,” she said.