The repercussions of NBC's decision to part ways with Megyn Kelly in the wake of her blackface comments scandal late last month are now being felt on election day.
Page Six reports that NBC had long planned to have Megyn play a high-profile role in its midterm election night coverage. With "Megyn Kelly Today," which occupied the "Today" show's third hour, suffering from declining ratings since she took over in September 2017, the network had hoped that the former Fox News personality would be a better fit for its political coverage, the New York Post's gossip column explains.
According to a press release the network sent out shortly before the lawyer-turned-journalist disastrously defended wearing blackface when it's part of a costume, Page Six notes, plans were in place for Megyn to broadcast on Nov. 6 alongside Lester Holt from "NBC Nightly News," Savannah Guthrie from "Today" and Chuck Todd from "Meet the Press."
But now, NBC is erasing all mentions of Megyn: A new ad promoting NBC's "The Vote: America's Future" live broadcast only features Lester, Savannah and Chuck.
Nearly two weeks after Megyn sparked controversy then issued an apology, NBC and her lawyer are still negotiating an exit package both sides can be happy with.
Recent reports have claimed Megyn wants the remaining balance on her three-year contract with the network, which is said to be another $50 million. She also reportedly wants an extra $10 million to sign a non-disclosure and non-disparage agreement, but her lawyer has denied she's asking for any more than what's in her contract.
On Nov. 5, Megyn's former colleague, disgraced former Fox News star Bill O'Reilly, told the Washington Examiner that he thinks she would have survived at NBC if her ratings had been better even with her troubling blackface comments. "NBC wanted out and they found a way," he said.
Bill — whom Megyn has publicly criticized in the past — did not, however, excuse what she said. "I was surprised that Ms. Kelly did not understand… the horrible history of blackface in this country… That this technique, if you will, was used to marginalize denigrate and mock blacks. That was its primary use. So you can't justify it by saying you were a kid and it wasn't a big deal. It was a big deal."