CBS This Morning cohosts Gayle King and Norah O’Donnell addressed the sexual misconduct allegations against fellow cohost Charlie Rose on Tuesday morning, one day after Rose was suspended by the network.
“I am not okay,” King said. “After reading that article in The Washington Post, it was deeply disturbing, troubling, and painful for me to read. That said, I think we have to make this matter to women — the women that have spoken up, the women who have not spoken up because they’re afraid. I’m hoping that now they will take the step to speak up, too, that this becomes a moment of truth.”
CBS suspended Rose, 75, in the wake of sexual misconduct allegations detailed in a report published by The Washington Post. Eight women, who worked or wanted to work for the Charlie Rose show on PBS between the late 1990s to 2011, claimed Rose groped their bodies, walked around naked in their presence, and made lewd phone calls.
Rose was also suspended by PBS and Bloomberg.
“I’ve enjoyed a friendship and a partnership with Charlie for the past five years,” King continued. “I’ve held him in such high regard and I’m really struggling because how do you, what do you say when someone that you deeply care about has done something that is so horrible? How do you wrap your brain around that? I’m really grappling with that. That said, Charlie does not get a pass here. He doesn’t get a pass from anyone in this room. We are all deeply affected, we are all rocked by this.”
“This is a moment that demands a frank and honest assessment about where we stand and, more generally, the safety of women,” O’Donnell said. “Let me be very clear: there is no excuse for this alleged behavior. It is systematic and pervasive, and I’ve been doing a lot of listening and I will continue to do that. This I know is true: women cannot achieve equality in the workplace or in society until there is a reckoning and a taking of responsibility.”
“This will be investigated,” she added. “This has to end. This behavior is wrong — period.”
In a statement provided to the Washington Post, Rose apologized for his behavior. “In my 45 years in journalism, I have prided myself on being an advocate for the careers of the women with whom I have worked. Nevertheless, in the past few days, claims have been made about my behavior toward some former female colleagues. It is essential that these women know I hear them and that I deeply apologize for my inappropriate behavior. I am greatly embarrassed. I have behaved insensitively at times, and I accept responsibility for that, though I do not believe that all of these allegations are accurate. I always felt that I was pursuing shared feelings, even though I now realize I was mistaken. I have learned a great deal as a result of these events, and I hope others will too. All of us, including me, are coming to a newer and deeper recognition of the pain caused by conduct in the past, and have come to a profound new respect for women and their lives,” Rose said.
Watch clips of King and O’Donnell on CBS This Morning above.