Less than 24 hours after NPR fired Juan Williams over comments about Muslims he made earlier in the week on Fox News, the cable channel announced on Thursday that it has signed Williams to a fat new contract.
- George Clooney Takes Over ‘Downton Abbey’ in Charity Holiday Spoof (Video)
- Moving ‘Homeland’ Finale Reveals Carrie’s Family Secrets, Finds Her at a Crossroads With Quinn
- Insider: Sony Denies NY Post Story Claiming It Will Release ‘The Interview’ on Crackle
- Dish Drops Fox News Channel, Fox Business Network as Talks Break Down
Williams, who has served as a regular contributor on Fox News since 1997, got a new multi-year deal from the cable channel. Terms were not disclosed, but a source close to the network said Williams is getting a pay hike that will net him close to $2 million a year over three years. (The Los Angeles Times was the first to report Williams' new deal.)
“Juan has been a staunch defender of liberal viewpoints since his tenure began at FOX News in 1997," FNC chief Roger Ailes said in a statement announcing Williams' new deal. "He’s an honest man whose freedom of speech is protected by FOX News on a daily basis.”
Williams told Bill O’Reilly on Monday that he gets “nervous” on planes when he sees people who are in “Muslim garb.” Those comments led to his termination from NPR on Wednesday.
More Entertainment stories
Autistic ballerina dances her way into hearts
- Every on-screen drink in 'Mad Men' in 5 minutes
- See the 'Dancing' stars' most memorable moves
- Emmy's biggest snubs? Cranston, Hamm, more
- 'Toy Story' toys burn up in prank on mom
- Autistic ballerina dances her way into hearts
Williams — who responded to his firing from NPR earlier in the day on Fox News — will be a guest O'Reilly's "Factor" on Thursday and will guest-host the show on Friday. (By my count, Williams will have appeared on Fox News Thursday at least three different times.)Video: Off-color comments land Juan Williams Fox contract (on this page)
Meanwhile, NPR president and CEO Vivian Schiller apologized for a comment she made about Williams at an Atlanta Press Club appearance earlier in the day. During the event, Schiller suggested Williams should have kept his feelings about Muslims between himself and "his psychiatrist."
"I spoke hastily and I apologize to Juan and others for my thoughtless remark," Schiller said in a statement later Thursday.
She did not apologize, however, for the memo she sent to NPR affiliates, also on Thursday, in which she claimed that this "isn’t the first time" NPR has had "serious concerns about some of Juan’s public comments," and that his firing was not of one isolated event.Story: Fox, others defend Williams over Muslim remarks
Copyright 2012 by TheWrap.com