Talk WABC New York (770) is in the final stages of negotiations to have Bill O’Reilly join the on-air lineup of the conservative talk station this fall. The station, purchased by billionaire John Catsimatidis from Cumulus Media in March, currently carries the former Fox News host’s short-form daily “O’Reilly Update” syndicated by Key Networks. This would be for a longer-form show, although it’s unclear if it would be a daily or weekly program.
CNBC reports that O’Reilly is in the final stages of contract negotiations, according to his attorney Fred Newman. “We are in the final stages of a contract and a program should be on in the fall,” Newman told CNBC through his assistant. A rep for O’Reilly also confirmed the talks to CNBC as did Catsimatidis, who called O’Reilly “one common sense American.”
“The O’Reilly Update” launched in May with 100 initial affiliates. The short-form program can now be heard in nearly 200 markets across the country. It marked a return to broadcast radio for O’Reilly, who hosted the nationally syndicated “The Radio Factor” from 2002-2009.
In April 2017, after 21 years as the face of Fox News, O’Reilly was fired. The move came two weeks after revelations that five women were paid millions in settlements after claims of sexual harassment.
WABC has been adding new shows to its lineup, including “Uncovering the Truth with Rudy Giuliani” hosted by the former New York City mayor and personal attorney to President Donald Trump.
Catsimatidis purchased the station for $12.5 million. In July he leased WLIR-FM (107.1) on the eastern end of Long Island as a FM simulcast partner.