Elisabeth Hasselbeck says Rosie O’Donnell’s new claims of a mutual crush — and her characterization of female athletes’ sexuality — are “offensive” and “disturbing.”
In Variety writer Ramin Setoodeh’s upcoming book “Ladies Who Punch: The Explosive Inside Story of ‘The View,’” O’Donnell says she had “a little bit of a crush … but it was in no way sexualized” on Hasselbeck when they worked together on “The View” — despite their on-air feuding. She went on to say of Hasselbeck, who has been married to ex-NFL player Tim Hasselbeck since 2002: “I think there were underlying lesbian undertones on both parts … She was the MVP of a Division 1 softball team for two years that won the finals. There are not many, in my life, girls with such athletic talent on sports teams that are traditionally male that aren’t at least a little bit gay.”
Hasselbeck, who played softball at Boston College, went on “Fox & Friends” Tuesday morning and spoke out about the claims by saying, “I think her casting a stereotype on female athletes in what she said … and that all female athletes are a little bit gay … That’s an unfair stereotype and it seems selfish in a way and I think that it’s untrue.”
Adding that it “was disturbing to read those things and it was offensive to me,” Hasselbeck said she “immediately started praying” after reading the book excerpt when it was released Monday. She then brought up workplace harassment: “I pray now the Holy Spirit gives me the words to articulate this. I think it can be addressed with both truth and grace. And the truth is … if you took her words and you replaced Rosie for Ronald, there would be an objectification of women in the workplace. So that is disturbing and it’s wrong. And whether you’re a man or whether you’re a woman and you’re objectifying women in the workplace, it’s wrong.”
Hasselbeck said she tried to call O’Donnell on Monday after the excerpt came out but that she had an old phone number for her former colleague. Ultimately, Hasselbeck said she forgives and prays for O’Donnell and hopes the two can “be at peace.”
Hasselbeck, 41, worked on “The View” from 2003 to 2013. The author of the new book “Point of View: A Fresh Look at Work, Faith, and Freedom” then co-hosted “Fox & Friends” until 2015, when she left to focus on raising her three children with Tim.
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