On June 7, we were asked by the producer of Bill O’Reilly’s show on First TV if the host could air our KABC radio ad on the Dodgers. We agreed and sent it to them. That night O’Reilly criticized us for not sharing the ad. That prompted Bill Donohue to issue a statement saying he made a false claim. His producer contacted us and apologized for what happened, explaining that the error was on their end. She said her boss would set the record straight on TV on June 8.
Then we received a phone call from Nicole Casey, the executive producer of O’Reilly’s show. She told our director of communications, Michael McDonald, that their tech staff had determined that the audio file was indeed sent, but that there was a problem on their end with their server. She said O’Reilly would play the ad on his show, admitting that the tech glitch was on their end, and that it was not because the Catholic League would not share the video file. The phone call was amicable.
We thought it was no big deal—these things happen. But then O’Reilly double crossed us, lying about what happened. Here is what he said on June 8.
“So I told you yesterday that the Catholic League would not send us the ad, the radio ad they made objecting to the Los Angeles Dodgers honoring the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence. We asked nicely. I mean my staff is so nice they are not like me. These are nice people. And the Catholic League would not send it over. So I said if you’re not going to help send it over then we are not going to help you. So anyway, they called, ‘Oh no, no, no, it was a technical glitch, we meant to send it.’ Because in the Catholic religion, if you lie, it’s a sin so there are Catholics and—technical glitches happen all the time. We didn’t get it, they tried to send it, but now we have it.”
On June 9, Donohue unloaded on O’Reilly.
“O’Reilly lied. No one from the Catholic League ever called his office saying we screwed up. McDonald left a message on the phone of the producer wanting to speak to her about what O’Reilly said the night before. When she called back, that is when she said the problem was on their end. This was confirmed by Casey.”
O’Reilly is right about one thing: It is a sin for Catholics to lie.