Meanwhile on Tuesday, a women's group said it planned to hire an airplane with a banner, as well as drop off petitions at Fox News Channel's NY headquarters, calling for O'Reilly to lose his job at the network. Shaunna Thomas, co-founder of UltraViolet, called for 21st Century Fox to make the results of its investigation of the accusations against O'Reilly public.
The decision to turn O'Reilly loose appears to have been made between Tuesday and Wednesday by the Murdochs, the family who control the operations of Fox News parent 21st Century Fox.
O'Reilly said in the statement at the time that he had settled only to spare his children from the controversy. By the evening, "The O'Reilly Factor" no longer bore his name, simply titled "The Factor".
Mr O'Reilly has been on holiday since 12 April, and was photographed shaking hands with Pope Francis at the Vatican earlier on Wednesday. Carlson, a veteran pundit who has hosted shows on CNN, MSNBC and PBS, had taken over for Megyn Kelly in January when she announced she was moving to NBC News.
Bill O'Reilly is out at FOX News.
The O'Reilly Factor and its host have been staples in American cable news since 1996, redefining what it means to tell the news.
Longtime Fox critics don't see it. Fox News has a "culture of harassment that did not start and does not end with Bill O'Reilly", said Rashad Robinson, executive director of the activist group Color of Change, which pressured advertisers to leave his show.
O'Reilly's viewership spiked in the days following an April 2 New York Times report on the harassment allegations.
Welcome to Fox News in the Donald Trump era. The New York Times reported earlier this month that O'Reilly, Fox and 21st Century had paid $13 million in settlements to five accusers. He was scheduled to return from a vacation Monday, but a permanent replacement is expected to be named for his time period before that time.
Others figure that O'Reilly's firing won't be a sticking point for most Fox viewers.
O'Reilly's show, "The O'Reilly Factor", is the top-rated show on Fox News.
Fox News has the most loyal audience there is, and that's because it has a monopoly on them, so to speak.
Lastly, and most importantly, we want to underscore our consistent commitment to fostering a work environment built on the values of trust and respect.
The announcement of O'Reilly's departure comes after multiple advertisers left his program, which drew an average of four million viewers per night in recent years.
Tampa Bay residents may know that O'Reilly is coming to town with his pal Dennis Miller in tow for a, er, performance at the Straz Center in September.
O'Reilly is also one of the country's most popular nonfiction authors.
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