Elisabeth Hasselbeck was involved in many a heated argument on The View before her departure from the show in 2013. But one in particular nearly prompted her to quit the show – during one of the live talk show’s commercial breaks.
As detailed in Ramin Setoodeh’s new book Ladies Who Punch: The Explosive Inside Story of The View, and heard in an audio recording unveiled by Variety, Hasselbeck erupted following an argument with co-hosts Barbara Walters and Joy Behar in 2006. The argument concerned an FDA proposal to make the “morning-after” birth control pill available over-the-counter. Walters interrupted Hasselbeck in the middle of a tirade, saying, “We have to go on and we have to learn how to discuss these things in some sort of rational way,” before moving to a commercial break.
At that point, Hasselbeck tore up her note cards and stormed off the stage, saying “F— that! I’m not going to sit there and get reprimanded on the air.” Behar attempted to calm her down, but Hasselbeck repeatedly said she was quitting. Executive producer Bill Geddie frantically tried to convince her to return to the show before the commercial break ended.
“You have to go on because you’re a pro,” Geddie says in the audio clip. You can hear the two walking back to the stage and Hasselbeck returning to her seat. Walters and Hasselbeck staged an on-air reconciliation immediately afterward.
Hasselbeck departed The View in 2013 and became a co-host of Fox & Friends, from which she retired in 2015. She responded to the release of the audio clip on Instagram Friday, saying, “I am quite humanly reactive. I used bad words when frustrated. I was pregnant with Taylor and a big conversation about the value and the lives of the unborn took place.”
You can listen to the full audio clip above. Ladies Who Punch is on sale now.