Elisabeth Hasselbeck tried to quit The View in 2006 after Barbara Walters shut her down

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Conservative Elisabeth Hasselbeck was on The View for 10 years, from 2003 to 2013. Like so many other View panelists which Ramin Setoodeh covers in his new book Ladies Who Punch, Elisabeth clashed with grande dame Barbara Walters. In 2006 on the show Barbara brought up the fact that the morning after pill was under consideration to sold over the counter. (In 2013 Plan B was approved by the FDA to be sold over the counter.) Elisabeth made the ridiculous argument that using Plan B was the same as birthing a baby and leaving it out on the street because life begins at the moment of conception. You can see that entire exchange on YouTube and Variety posted a shorter segment, which I’m including below. I just rewatched it and Elisabeth did let the other women, including Joy Behar and Lisa Loeb, talk at first, but toward the end she got all loud and indignant. She brought up universal healthcare, which had nothing to do with the argument, and so Barbara told her to calm down. She really needed to be told that. After that exchange Elisabeth ripped up her cue cards on the show and initially refused to return to the set. She also tried to quit The View backstage. Someone gave Variety the audio (Setoodeh works for Variety), which I guess was captured on Hasselbeck’s live mic. You can listen to that on YouTube below and Variety has a partial transcript:

on August 2, 2006, Hasselbeck was having an argument with Barbara Walters and Joy Behar on TV about a proposal from the FDA to allow the morning-after pill for over-the-counter consumption.

Hasselbeck, who argued taking the pill is “the same thing as birthing a baby and leaving it out in the street,” wouldn’t let the other co-hosts provide their opposing points of view.

Finally, Walters had to interrupt her. “Could you stop now?” Walters said. “We have to go on and we have to learn how to discuss these things in some sort of rational way.”

As the show cut to a commercial, Hasselbeck was so furious, she tore up her notecards and bolted from the table.

“F— that!” Hassselbeck screamed in a narrow corridor behind the stage, according to an audio tape of the exchange. “I’m not going to sit there and get reprimanded on the air. It’s not ok to sit there and get reprimanded on the air.”

“Come into my office here,” Behar said, trying to calm her down.

“What the f—!” Hasselbeck yelled back. “I don’t even swear. She has me swearing. This woman is driving me nuts. I’m not going back. I can’t do the show like this. She just reprimanded me, and she knew exactly what she was doing. Good-bye! I’m off. Write about that in the New York F—ING Post!”

After that, Hasselbeck raced down a stairwell and hid in her dressing room.

“Well, that’s ridiculous,” Walters said when she heard Hasselbeck had quit.

With only minutes left before the live program returned, the show’s executive producer Bill Geddie had to convince her to come back.

“You have to go on because you’re a pro, so come with me,” Geddie pleaded, as they raced back to the set.

[From Variety]

After that Elisabeth came back onstage and sat next to Barbara on the couch. Barbara put her arm around her and they hugged it out and said everything was fine. It looked a little awkward like Barbara was putting Elisabeth in her place. Elisabeth did need to be told that she needed to calm down because she was loud and talking over everyone. I’m not team Barbara by any means and it’s clear she created a toxic work environment where it was her way or the highway. She could have handled it a little better but at the same time Elisabeth was being over emotional. Elisabeth lasted another seven years on The View, until 2013 when she was fired. Barbara was on the show until 2014.

Elisabeth wrote a whole response to this on Instagram. She invokes God a lot and I don’t even understand all of it. You can go there if you’d like to read it.

Before the morning after pill was available over the counter you could approximate one with birth control pills. I learned about it from a magazine in the 90s and I had to do that after a condom accident when I was in my 20s. My life may have turned out much differently if I didn’t have that information. I actually forgot about this, but I wrote about it on this site after Elisabeth shared her garbage opinion back in 2006.

Here’s that video including the backstage audio. There are F bombs so it’s unsafe for work or around young kids. You can see the full panel discussion here.

Embed from Getty Images

Embed from Getty Images

photos credit: Getty and YouTube screenshot

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28 Responses to “Elisabeth Hasselbeck tried to quit The View in 2006 after Barbara Walters shut her down”

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  1. Harryg says:

    Hasselbeck is just one of those people who should be completely ignored. As if she didn’t exist at all.

  2. me says:

    I wouldn’t say her opinion is “garbage”. She does have the right to her opinion even if most of us don’t agree with it. In that case, we are no better that Barbara Walters who wants it “her way or no way”. Elizabeth was acting very childish and definitely not like a pro. If you want to quit, go ahead. There are millions of others waiting to take your place ! I don’t understand how The View is still on the air. Who watches it? And honestly this happened such a long time ago, perhaps Elizabeth has changed her views? LOL who are we kidding.

    • Celebitchy says:

      She’s saying using a morning after pill in a 72 hour window after sex and before an egg implants is the same as birthing a baby and leaving it out on the street. That’s a garbage opinion and I stand by that. So many Republicans want to punish, jail and do worse to women for having abortions. By making these arguments she’s playing into that. They’re so anti-science and anti-women.

      • me says:

        I certainly don’t agree with what’s she saying, but she still has a right to her own opinion. The point of the show was to bring together women of varying “views” and that’s exactly what Elizabeth did for the show. Either way, that show aired years ago and perhaps she’s more educated on the topic now. Who knows.

      • AMAyson1977 says:

        No. She is ABSOLUTELY entitled to her (garbage, demonstrably false, unhinged) opinion, and BW, as the face of the show at that time, is ABSOLUTELY entitled to refuse to give her a major network television platform upon which to disseminate it. She can think whatever she wants and believe whatever she wants, but she has no right to loudly, shrilly proclaim it on television. There are no “two sides” here. And no, the interceding years have not made her more educated or reasonable. She is still pro-forced-birth. Now she does it on Faux News, where they let her prattle on because their viewers are also pro-forced-birth. SMH.

    • LaraK says:

      Yup, garbage opinion – it has no basis in science or fact.

      “Opinion” is something that has two legitimate sides, and you can provide a perspective. For example, it is my opinion that Elizabeth’s smile is creepy because her veneers are too big. You may legitimately like big teeth smiles, so different perspective. Cool.

      “Garbage” is the nonsense that Hasselbek said.

      • llvanslyke says:

        Yes, everyone has a right to an opinion but it’s frightening how little facts come into play when certain people are forming their opinions. They act like their opinions are fact and that’s not the same thing and it should never be conflated. Additionally, our media seems to be Rife with this type of format and this sort of presentation of opinion as fact. They give opinion and fact equal weight. This is a flaw in logic and breeds more illogical thinking instead of helping educate the public.

      • ChillyWilly says:

        Yes,there is a difference between an opinion and a lie. And yes, her teeth are effing creepy.

      • hogtowngooner says:

        Or once they couch their opinions in religion, they don’t have to compromise anymore. Doesn’t matter how factually incorrect they are, “it’s my religion” just closes the argument to them.
        Asimov was right, we are at a place where “my ignorance is equal to your knowledge.”

      • holly hobby says:

        I remember my kids had a worksheet in 4th grade. Fact vs. opinion. They go down the line write F or O. F=The tree is green. O=I love green apples. Some of the adults should do that worksheet to understand f vs. o.

    • Otaku fairy... says:

      Some opinions are just garbage and actively harmful toward others, even if legally a person has the right to express them. What she said is harmful misinformation that really doesn’t need to be spread to anyone who may ever be in the position of making laws, having daughters, or impregnating a woman.

      • me says:

        This is why it’s important to educate ourselves and do our own research.

      • Lithe says:

        Well said, @Otaku fairy!

        It can be downright dangerous to conflate conviction and faith with truth. I wouldn’t care so much about stupid opinions being allowed airtime if they were subjected to rigorous fact-checking. EH should be embarrassed, not about the F-bombs, but about irresponsibly disseminating untruths that could have tragic consequences.

      • Arpeggi says:

        @Me, while I agree with the need for education, I’m not comfortable with the “do our own research” part.

        Too often nowadays “do your own research” equates to google something. In so many cases, we don’t have the correct expertise to properly assess the quality of the information we find. So we really have to rely on the information from experts in a specific field: if the majority opinion in a field is “x”, then it’s likely that it is the case. Experts are there for a reason and we have to accept that their opinion has more strength than ours or our values with regards to their field.

    • Original Jenns says:

      When your “opinion” contradicts all scientific facts, it’s not an opinion, it’s garbage.

      • Original T.C. says:

        Yep, same garbage as saying using the pill to control your cycle or prevent pregnancy is abortion. She has a right to her opinion and we have the right to point out that it’s B.S. and illogical.

        Of note the only thing I remember fro the Bible about abortion is regarding *men* spilling their seed outside of the womb. So yeah, she should be preaching to men!!!

    • HEMP says:

      This an absolutely garbage opinion and it is a dangerous one. It sets us down the path of criminalizing miscarriages as well as abortion because it has no basis in fact. Anti-choice advocates are frequently anti-birth control as well because they believe that the pill causes abortions by preventing implantation.

      Her arguments are currently circulating through so many states which is so harmful to pregnant people. She and others like her are intentionally spreading dangerous misinformation.

    • Mellie says:

      It is a garbage opinion, but ‘me’ is correct, she has a right to state it. And you know what, they (the producers, Barbara Walters…whoever) chose to put her on that show because they knew she had those types of opinions and they wanted the controversy that came with it. She’s not the first person in the world to state an ‘opinion’ on national television that was full of BS. Who watches The View anyway? I cannot stand it when people start trying to talk over each other on any show, that drives me crazy. Immediate channel change when that happens.

  3. Snazzy says:

    Thing is, if she really wanted to quit, she could have. She didn’t want to quit, she wanted the attention and to be told she was right. I’ve worked with dumb b*tches and a-holes and they are all the same: they refuse opposing points of view and will yell and scream to ensure they are the center of attention. When my colleagues yelled about quitting, I would simply respond “well no one is stopping you”. come to think of it I wish they had quit. Would have improved the work environment 🤣

  4. Aims says:

    The problem with Elizabeth was she was too emotional. She was so wrapped up in her conservative bs that she didn’t look at the facts. She came across ignorant. Also this is the woman who went on the road with Sarah Palin campaigning for her. She was extremely tone deaf when it came to social causes and shutdown anyone who tried to bring facts to the table.

    Personally, I’m glad she’s disappeared. Her politics and personality were both toxic.

    • Elkie says:

      21st century RWNJ “conservatism” is entirely dependent on ignoring factual information in favour of shrieking hyperbole.

      Ask any Republican voter to name a Democrat who’s actually campaigned on infanticide, open borders, disarming law-abiding gun owners or communismsocialismmarxism and they’ll just stare at you blankly because they’re not used to backing up their feelings with reality.

  5. Justmyopinion says:

    Another cherry-picker. She didn’t even understand how Plan B works. It prevents conception. Yet, she let the F=flag fly…because cussing is clearly a moral thing to do.
    I wonder how she prevents endless pregnancies?

    • Meg says:

      Totally agree. She clearly doesn’t even know how plan B works.

    • Original T.C. says:

      Yes, I hope she understands that using the pill to prevent conception is also “keeping babies from being born”!

  6. Joy says:

    People like her cover their eyes in biology class.

  7. Yes Doubtful says:

    Ugh…I haven’t watched the show in years, but I remember clearly how awful she was on it. She spread so much misinformation and then threw tantrums like this when called out on it. McCain is no different.

  8. Baltimom says:

    I think this argument of “it’s her opinion” is garbage. If she had said she was against it because she’s against all forms of contraception because of her religion – THAT would be an opinion. Spewing out lies and misinformation is not an opinion. That’s laziness and that is garbage. If you care so much about something, then learn about it. Don’t just swallow the “facts” from sites that you like and then barf them everywhere. She got backed into a corner because of her lack of info so then she ripped into universal healthcare. Interesting route to take since that would help women avoid having to consider abortion in the first place. I just wish women like EH could stop with the dead baby talk and focus on helping women and families. Maybe try to fix the domestic adoption process for starters. Fight for more maternity and paternity leave. Push for a work week with less hours so people can spend more time with their kids.

  9. topsy says:

    Barbara Walters was a lot more tolerant and patient with that stupid bitch than I would have been. It made me sick to listen to how they were all coddling her backstage. I know they had a show to do and they just wanted to get her back in front of the camera but maybe if somebody, SOMEWHERE had told Elizabeth that she was appallingly ignorant, she might have taken the opportunity to educate herself. Incidents like this made her a poster-girl for the ‘deplorables’.

    Say whatever you want about Barbara Walters (and there’s a lot that can be said!) but that woman made her bones in the old days when men refused to work with her BECAUSE SHE WAS A WOMAN and told her to her face that she was incompetent. To see Barbara Walters placate someone who should be cleaning her toilet, is stomach-turning.

    This clip is one of the reason Donald Trump is President of the United States. No-one had the courage to publicly tell him to his face what a lowlife piece of shit he REALLY is. Everybody chose to ‘rise above it’. The only woman who publicly stood up to him was a WOMAN, and she was torn to pieces for it.