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Elisabeth Hasselbeck was not surprised to hear rumors of Rosie O’Donnell returning to The View, particularly since she thinks the former co-host effectively announced her return the same day Barbara Walters taped her final episode.
Walters’ final episode as View co-host was taped on May 15, the same day that all present and former View co-hosts reunited on the air for a live show that aired earlier that day. Hasselbeck said on Wednesday’s Fox & Friends that O’Donnell told her when they were on set together in May that she produced the reunion show and it was her idea.
Hasselbeck, who was on vacation but called in to the Fox News morning show to weigh in on O’Donnell, added that she was shocked that O’Donnell was so “at ease” that day and “walked around with such control.”
“Do you think that the woman who left the way that she did would be producing Walters’ goodbye show?” Hasselbeck said of O’Donnell. “Here’s the shocker: It was actually her hello show.”
“I do believe this has been in the works for a very, very long time,” Hasselbeck added.
The Fox News host, who famously sparred with O’Donnell during their year on The View together, including in a memorable 10-minute argument about Iraq, continued to bash her former co-host.
“I know Rosie very well. We worked together quite closely,” Hasselbeck said. “Talk about not securing the border. Here in comes to The View the very woman who spit in the face of our military, spit in the face of her own network, and really in the face of a person who stood by her and had civilized debates for the time that she was there.”
A source close to The View was surprised by Hasselbeck’s comments, wondering why the Fox News anchor didn’t mention anything about her interactions with O’Donnell the day of the reunion show two months ago. Hasselbeck and O’Donnell got along quite well that day, the source added.
Furthermore, the source said Hasselbeck’s comments are “kind of a slap in the face” to the people who worked hard to create Walters’ farewell shows.
O’Donnell left The View after one year as a panelist, saying that she had experienced something like posttraumatic stress disorder, and Walters said she resented the way O’Donnell dumped on the show.
O’Donnell later returned to The View for a guest appearance three months prior to the reunion show, ahead of which Walters said she has great affection for O’Donnell. She called O’Donnell a lively and engaging guest who is a part of the show’s history.
Hasselbeck also said she would be interested to see what the dynamic would be between O’Donnell and Whoopi Goldberg, who is expected to return to The View next season.
“Whoopi is not going to let anybody control her,” Hasselbeck said. “She is the leader on that show. … I don’t think it would be wise for Rosie O’Donnell to challenge Whoopi Goldberg on anything.”
Hasselbeck closed by saying that “days like this” remind her how thankful she is to be at Fox & Friends.
O’Donnell tweeted “shocking” in response to a tweet from Entertainment Tonight’s account saying Hasselbeck “trashes” O’Donnell’s return.
— Rosie (@Rosie) July 9, 2014
The View has not yet confirmed that O’Donnell will be returning to the ABC daytime show.
Watch Hasselbeck’s full segment below.
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