Walters Airs 'The View's' Dirty Laundry
First, Meredith Vieira said good-bye at the beginning of the month as she heads to
"Good morning and welcome to 'The View,'" the veteran newswoman started the program, seated at an austere drop-leaf table next to Behar and Hasselbeck, before turning to Behar and saying, "Then there were three."
"Then there were three," Behar repeated to nervous laughter, throwing up her hands and shooting the audience a look that said both "She's the one who said it" and "Well, it's true."
Walters then turned to the camera and delivered the following statement:
"This is truthfully a very difficult day for us; and it is a sad day for us. If you were watching the program yesterday you would have heard Star announce that she's leaving 'The View' and will not be on the program next fall. We didn't expect her to make this statement yesterday -- she gave us no warning -- and we were taken by surprise.
"But the truth is Star has known for months that
"But Star made another choice and since her announcement yesterday she's made further announcements that have surprised us. So it is becoming uncomfortable for us to pretend that everything is the same at this table and therefore, regrettably, Star will no longer be on this program except for some shows that have been prerecorded. 'The View' helped make Star a star and Star helped make 'The View' the success that it is and we will never forget that. We wish her well in this new chapter of her life as we begin a new chapter on 'The View.'
Jones, a former lawyer, has been criticized widely over the past couple of years. First, was her incessant talk about her over-the-top wedding (complete with frequent mentions of sponsors and expensive freebies) to Al Reynolds, followed by her red carpet coverage for E! that many considered excessively self-involved and pandering.
The impending arrival of O'Donnell has also added pressure to the situation, as the comedian has openly challenged Jones' rapid weight loss of over 100 pounds. O'Donnell contends that she underwent gastric bypass surgery, but Jones refuses to reveal her "diet" secrets.
No announcement has been made as to who will replace Jones, but
As of Wednesday afternoon, Jones remains listed on ABC's Web site as a co-host.