January 6th, 2008
10:10 AM ET
12 years ago

O'Reilly gets in confrontation with Obama staffer

O'Reilly got into a confrontation with an Obama staffer Saturday.

O'Reilly got into a confrontation with an Obama staffer Saturday.

(CNN) - Fox News talk show host Bill O'Reilly had a confrontation with a staffer for Barack Obama’s campaign that the aide and several eyewitnesses claim became physical.

The incident began when O’Reilly tried to get Obama’s attention after a Nashua campaign event. He allegedly began yelling at Obama’s National Trip Director Marvin Nicholson to get out of the way. O’Reilly then, according to eyewitness accounts, shoved the staffer.

Nicholson told CNN O'Reilly grabbed him by the arm and started "pushing" him. Nicholson also said that when he asked O'Reilly to stop pushing him, the talk-show host responded that he was "low class."

O’Reilly soon got Obama’s attention, and the two men spoke briefly.

"They shook hands and Mr. O'Reilly said that he thought Sen. Obama was great and that he loved him, and he'd love to have him on the show," Nicholson said. "And then the senator said that he would think about coming on the show after the primaries."

Then the Secret Service intervened to ask O’Reilly to step back behind the barricade that marked the press area.

Speaking later on Fox News, O'Reilly said he tried to "gently remove" the Obama staffer so his camera could get a shot of the Illinois senator.

"We're sorry we had to have that little confrontation," O'Reilly added, "but no one on this earth is going to block a shot on The O'Reilly Factor. It is not going to happen."

Related video: Obama aide: O'Reilly shoved me

- CNN's Chris Welch contributed to this report

soundoff (775 Responses)
  1. Brandon

    I wanna fight o'reilly.

    seriously.

    HEY BILL O'REILLY...IM CALLIN YOU OUT, CHUMP

    January 6, 2008 03:10 am at 3:10 am |
  2. Robert A. Radosevic , Penn Valley, CA

    Bill, you are lower then a snakes belly.

    January 6, 2008 03:13 am at 3:13 am |
  3. Observant One

    What a bunch of 80 percenters and Socialists. Most everyone is too scared to stand apart from the crowd and when someone does the crabs try to tear them down by berating them. Why don't all you job people(translation= losers) and conformists go live in Iran where no one is allowed to stand out on pain of death. You should be right at home. You go O' Reilly!! Right or wrong, at least you have the guts to stand apart. I' m with you.

    January 6, 2008 03:21 am at 3:21 am |
  4. Evon

    Someone needs to teach Mr. O'Riley a lesson. He displays himself on TV as a neo conservative but his behavior in public and on his show (on occassion) is appaling. When have we not seen him with his foot in his mouth? Why dont we give him the title he deserves "racisit". He needs to go into his closet, grab his white hood and robe and mount his horse and ride into the sunset.

    January 6, 2008 03:33 am at 3:33 am |
  5. Eric

    Good for O'reilly, thats hilarious. That low life staffer should have gotten out of his way. Hilary-Obama = terrible for america.

    January 6, 2008 03:34 am at 3:34 am |
  6. Poppy

    All of you Obama supporters out there answer a simple question. When the polish and glittery feel good stage is all worn off of Obama, where's the substance?

    January 6, 2008 03:35 am at 3:35 am |
  7. Jerri

    Don't waste your time watching Bill's show...I hear it is toxic to the soul.

    Indeed, Pox News deserves Bill O'Reilly.

    January 6, 2008 03:39 am at 3:39 am |
  8. Joyce Allen

    This is exactly what Mr. Obama is talking about. There are to many O'Reillys in the world who only care about themselves, never mine how there actions affect others.

    January 6, 2008 03:41 am at 3:41 am |
  9. Sammy

    O'Reilly – You are a disgrace to humanity!

    January 6, 2008 03:43 am at 3:43 am |
  10. Nancy Irving

    "Low class" – that's funny. O'Reilly is always claiming to be "working class," though he isn't (his father was an accountant and he was brought up in middle-class suburban Long Island).

    Guess this shows what he really thinks of working-class people. Or maybe it's projection...

    January 6, 2008 03:59 am at 3:59 am |
  11. Kiara

    You are all idiots. The guy was not just blocking the shot, he was going out of his way to block the camera. What are you spineless liberals afraid of. Bill is fair to the left and the right. he hits both sides with real questions. And does not let them lie or avoid answering the questions. But for some odd reason liberals are always afraid to come on his show and defend their views. Personally, I think its because liberals don't have any real solutions to problems. All you want is to raise taxes and get the government to do or pay everything for you. But I digress. Explain this to me. Obama and Clinton want to be be President, but they can't verbally defend their policies against Bill?? Come on, give me a flipping break.

    January 6, 2008 04:15 am at 4:15 am |
  12. Pedro, Las Vegas, NV

    Everyone wants a piece of the next POTUS, it seems.

    January 6, 2008 04:17 am at 4:17 am |
  13. Andy, New York, New York

    The O-man is an aggressive journalist! He reminds me somewhat of Geraldo! But in journalism, if you really savor the job, you'll go after your subject, even if it means bending and sometimes breaking the rules. At the end of the day, the O-man got Obama to agree to appear on the O-Factor! The means to the end was rough, yes, but the end justified the means. If the O-man and Obama ended up in a heated exchange after the alleged shoving, then I'd say the O-man definitely crossed the line.

    Do you guys know what it means for the O-man to intorduce Obama on his show showing footage of himself and Obama in one-on-one talks, even if breifly? Better yet, if, by a very long shot, Obama became elected President, that footage of the O-man and Obama in the early goings will be like a prized collection for the O-man.

    The O-man already doesn't like Hillary, and even though he doesn't know Obama that well, he'd root for the O-man AGAINST Hillary; even promoting Obama on his conservative talk show!

    Obama, meanwhile, continues to impress, despite talks of his inexperience!

    January 6, 2008 04:24 am at 4:24 am |
  14. deroy

    how about a duel.

    pistols or sabres!

    January 6, 2008 04:27 am at 4:27 am |
  15. Jeremiah

    If Mr. O'Reilly placed his hands on another person, and that person(Obama's staffer) took offense to it, he(O'Reilly) should be charged with assault. As for the Secret Service not following the rules, and allowing Mr. O'Reilly to come that close to a Presidental candidate and not be behind the media lines is no good..

    January 6, 2008 04:27 am at 4:27 am |
  16. surge

    you finally open your eyes and see the world is beyond fox news hear hear say then you report

    January 6, 2008 04:47 am at 4:47 am |
  17. Sam IA

    Could have been worse. Billy could have been making obscene phone calls to them. We all know he has a history. Billy the perv and Rush the hophead, The leaders of the right. Hypocrisy marches on.

    January 6, 2008 04:57 am at 4:57 am |
  18. Crawford Tillinghast

    Can't wait to see the hay that Olbermann makes of this on Monday (and sorry about namedropping one of CNN's competitors).

    January 6, 2008 05:04 am at 5:04 am |
  19. NWO HUNTER

    ANOTHER REPTILIAN STICKING OUT HIS FORKED TONGUE. HIS BLATANCY SHOWS HIS DESPERATION. THEY ALL KNOW 2012 IS AROUND THE CORNER.

    TIME AND THE TRUTH ARE ON OUR SIDE...

    ANYONE KNOW A GOOD RECIPE FOR LIZARD STEW? | 8 > O

    January 6, 2008 05:12 am at 5:12 am |
  20. alam

    sir,

    hillary is right about scarecrow obama. an opportunist and a liar. why is he sucking up the jew lobby with a muslim middle name ?
    regards alam

    January 6, 2008 05:21 am at 5:21 am |
  21. Karen

    What is wrong with all you people who support Obama? Don't you know this country is in a GLOBAL CRISIS!! We NEED someone with experience, not just IDEAS who can lead this country from day one. We NEED someone who has a PROVEN track record in making change and who will make significant change going forward. Your Obama can NOT deliver on his ideas and promises. Your judgement is clouded and you may as well be following a rock star with your fanaticism. VOTE FOR HILLARY CLINTON who IS an agent of change and WILL repair the damage and reputation our country has fallen upon during these 8 miserable years of the shrubbery administration.

    January 6, 2008 05:26 am at 5:26 am |
  22. EH

    BILL OREILY(I SPELLED HIS SURNAME INCORRECTLY FOR A REASON),. WHY ? BECAUSE BILL O, IS "LOW CLASS", WHICH IS THE LABLE BILL USED TO DESCRIBE MR, NICHOLSON. BILL, IS A CERTIFIABLE RACIST, AS FAR AS I'M CONCERNED, ANYWAY. AND, JUST BECAUSE SEN. OBAMA IS BLACK DOES NOT MEAN BILL ISN'T A RACIST. MOST IRISH MEN ARE ! PEOPLE NEED TO START BOYCOTTING THAT FACTOR SHOW BILL HOSTS. IT'S COMICAL, TO ME, THAT BILL THINKS OF HIMSELF AS AN "ICON", AS WELL. TO ME AN ICONIC PERSON IS ONE THAT OTHERS ARE UNCRITICALLY DEVOTED TOO. MOVIE STARS, ATHLETES, ETC., BUT A HOST LIKE BILL AIN'T NO ICON. BILL IS JUST BASICALLY A MESSED UP PERSON. I WOULD HAVE BROKE HIS ARM HAD HE PLACED HIS PAWS ON ME, IF I WERE MR. NICHOLSON. SO BILL, YOU'RE A LUCKY MAN

    January 6, 2008 05:39 am at 5:39 am |
  23. ANDROLOMA, Commerce City, Colorado

    O'Reilly, oh really?

    January 6, 2008 05:43 am at 5:43 am |
  24. ANDROLOMA, Commerce City, Colorado

    Too bad O'Reilly wasn't in Pakistan to "block the shot" at Bhutto!

    January 6, 2008 05:51 am at 5:51 am |
  25. Ryan

    just watched Mr. Nicholson's interview...seemed rightly upset he was manhandled by a news-celeb. Patty D. comment about Bill and Republican Party's numbered days are right. Bill O' Reilly defined himself by supporting Bush&Co. every move and now the house of cards has been crumbling, I think Bill's slowly going insane.

    January 6, 2008 06:12 am at 6:12 am |
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