Geraldo Rivera maintains that Fox News has always let him speak his mind.
"Contrary to published accounts no one at Fox News ever either cut my mic or told me what to say But I do advocate cutting Eric Bolling's mic," the Geraldo at Large host tweeted yesterday in response to a claim in a new book that the plug was purposely pulled on him during a November 2012 discussion on Fox & Friends about the fatal attack on U.S. officials in Benghazi, Libya.
"Specifically to Jonathan Alter," he added, referring to the author of the book in question, The Center Holds: Obama and His Enemies, "I like you mate, but you never spoke with me about Benghazi and you never asked if Roger Ailes cut my mic."
Per the New York Times, Alter wrote in The Center Holds (out June 4) that, during the debate between Rivera and Bolling, none other than Fox News Channel president Roger Ailes "called the control room and told the producers to cut Rivera's mic."
But in addition to Rivera's defense of his freedom of speech at the cable news network, Mediaite reports that Ailes never made the call—but a network rep says that executive VP of programming Bill Shine did call the control room and encouraged them to move the segment along because Rivera and Bolling were starting to personally attack each other.
And yet the debate still rages. "In that clip, you called me a liar for my opinions," Bolling said on Rivera's radio show yesterday, referring to his stance that the U.S. government's response to the Benghazi attack was to send "no help." Rivera told his Fox News colleague at the time, "You are a politician looking to make a political point."
"Did I call you a liar?" Rivera wondered.
"Yes, you did," Bolling replied.