Elisabeth Hasselbeck is not leaving “The View,” despite reports circulating throughout the weekend.
Rumors began circulating following Joy Behar‘s announcement last week that she was leaving ABC’s morning talk and entertainment program after 16 years. Barbara Walters, who started the show in 1997, set the record straight.
“There are no plans for Elisabeth to leave this show,” Walters said, addressing rumors that the show’s co-hosts had forced her out because of her conservative views. “The truth is we like her … and beyond that, we value and appreciate her point of view.”
Walters also addressed Behar’s leaving.
“It’s very bittersweet,” Walters said, adding, “Joy and I started this show together. I sort of feel I discovered you.”
“I will miss you,” Walters said. “I want what’s best for you.”
Behar responded the way she knows best — with a joke. She gave her top 10 list of reasons for leaving “The View.”
Among them: ABC won’t let her drink on the air “like Hoda and Kathie Lee”; her husband keeps pressuring her to “have a five-way”; she’s afraid of catching a childhood disease as Walters recently did; she’s starting a new “Real Housewives” show for the Al Jazeera network; and, finally, she will be able to go a whole week without putting on a bra.
Walters, who recently returned to the show after a six-week absence to recover from chicken pox and a concussion, cleared up any rumors that she was leaving.
“Right now the only person who cannot leave this show is me,” she said.