In an interview on the syndicated Dr. Phil show, Fox News host Megyn Kelly claims President-elect Donald Trump threatened her and screamed at her mere days before the Republican presidential debate she moderated in August 2015.
The host of the Kelly File claimed in the interview, which will air Tuesday, that Trump was upset after finding out she had interviewed Harry Hunt — the author of Lost Tycoon: The Many Lives of Donald J. Trump.
Hunt’s book, which was published in 1993, included numerous salacious allegations against Trump, such as a claim that the billionaire’s first wife Ivana accused him of “rape” in a sworn deposition during their divorce in the early 1990s, an allegation she later said was not true.
“Once he announced his candidacy for president, one of the stories that broke about him was that in his divorce proceeding from his first wife Ivana, she had under oath accused him of raping her,” Kelly told Dr. Phil McGraw.
“Trump was not happy with that interview,” Kelly said. “He wasn’t happy that I put the reporter on the show four days before the presidential debate.”
The Fox News host said the real estate mogul’s unhappiness manifested itself in an angry phone call.
“He called me up and threatened me and made very clear to me that he was extremely displeased. I told him flat-out, ‘Mr Trump, I’m sorry that you are unhappy, but you don’t control the editorial on the Kelly File. And that was it: He started screaming at me; he hung-up the phone … and the next time we met was that Thursday night.”
While the feud between Trump and Kelly began with that angry phone call, it continued throughout the rest of the presidential campaign, producing several memorable moments.
In a question during that August debate, Kelly asked Trump, “You’ve called women you don’t like fat pigs, dogs, slobs and disgusting animals.”
Trump fired back on Twitter after the debate, but followed that up by telling CNN regarding Kelly, “There was blood coming out of her eyes, blood coming out of her … wherever.”
Incensed by the incident, he refused to take part in a subsequent candidates forum in January prior to the Iowa caucus she was scheduled to moderate.
Kelly did, however, carry out a calm interview with Trump in May where they seemed to make peace.
During the interview, Trump said he thought Kelly’s question about his comments about women “was unfair” but appeared to understand her decision to ask it.
“I don’t really blame you, because you’re doing your thing. But from my standpoint, I don’t have to like it,” he said.
That was until late October, when Trump surrogate, former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich, had a contentious exchange with Kelly on her program.
“I mean, do you want to go back through the tapes on your show recently?” Gingrich asked in response to a question about whether or not Trump was a sexual predator in the wake of a 2005 tape in which the billionaire boasted about being able to grope women due to his wealth and fame.
“You are fascinated with sex, and you don’t care about public policy,” Gingrich said.
Gingrich was not done, continuing to attack Kelly on her line of questioning.
“You cannot defend that statement,” Gingrich said of Kelly’s “sexual predator” comment. “I’m sick and tired of people like you using language that’s inflammatory, that’s not true.”
Kelly then mentioned Trump’s accusers, whose accusations Trump has vehemently denied, while saying the story had to be covered.
“You know what, Mr. Speaker? I’m not fascinated by sex, but I am fascinated by the protection of women and understanding what we’re getting in the Oval Office,” Kelly shot back at Gingrich.
The next day, while at an opening for his newest hotel, Trump praised Gingrich for the interview with Kelly the previous night.
“By the way, congratulations, Newt, on last night,” Trump said, pointing to Gingrich, who was in the crowd.
“That was an amazing interview. That was an amazing interview. We don’t play games, Newt, right? We don’t play games.”
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