Former Fox News anchor Bill O'Reilly feels for White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders, who he said is not able to fight back when attacked by beat reporters, unlike her boss, President Donald Trump.
During a conversation the two shared at a party on Sunday night for newly confirmed German Ambassador Richard Grinnell, O'Reilly volunteered to stand next to her during her almost daily White House press briefings, which regularly get heated.
The former "King of Cable" recounted his conversation with Sanders to his subscribers on his Monday night digital show. "I said, 'Ms. Sanders, with all due respect, if you ever need me to stand next to you in those press briefings, I will volunteer to do that. And, if somebody gets out of line, I will tell them exactly what I think of their behavior,' " O'Reilly said.
In response to his suggestion, which he said was an "honest offer," Sanders laughed. O'Reilly told her that Trump, who he has known for decades, is "just flamboyant enough to maybe be OK it."
O'Reilly said it was his first time meeting Sanders, and that, "as usual," he did most of the talking. "I told her that she is doing a great job, in the sense that it's not a partisan play," he said. "She's representing her country in very difficult circumstances, extremely difficult, and she's a patriot — you know, she's taken enormous amount of abuse, enormous."
O'Reilly, who said he normally skips parties because he's "not a snob," teased the story on Twitter on Monday morning. Sanders did not respond to an emailed request for comment on her conversation with O'Reilly.
Sanders was squarely in the national news last week after being mocked during Michelle Wolf's performance at the annual White House Correspondents' Dinner. Her press briefing last Thursday was particularly contentious, as she sparred with White House reporter April Ryan.