According to Southampton’s Barbara Walters, Sag Harborite Joy Behar was booted from her longtime co-host position at The View in 2013, despite statements from Behar saying otherwise.
Walters, who is retiring in May, told Variety that the vocally liberal Behar and conservative Elisabeth Hasselbeck were let go due to a network decision.
“The feeling was if one left, both had to leave. We needed to shake things up,” Walters tells Variety. Since their exits, actress Jenny McCarthy has joined the series, and there have been less political topics explored. While Walters will no longer appear on The View, she will stay on as executive producer and is looking for new co-hosts, including a “conservative voice” to balance the left-leaning nature of the other four women.
Both Hasselbeck and Behar had been known for their strong (usually opposing) political opinions. Behar, whose frequent “So what? Who cares?” statement often elicited laughs and criticism.
Walters received a Lifetime Achievement Award from Guild Hall in March. The storied journalist’s final day co-hosting The View will be Friday, May 16. ABC will air a retrospective on her career later that day at 9 p.m.