Rosie O’Donnell denies Elisabeth Hasselbeck’s ‘objectification’ charge

Rosie O’Donnell is responding to her former “View” co-host and sparring partner, Elisabeth Hasselbeck who described the comedian’s recent comments that she had a crush on her as “disturbing” and “offensive.”

The two “View” hosts, whose tenures overlapped during the 2006-2007 season, often battled over politics. 

O’Donnell made headlines Monday for comments she made in “Ladies Who Punch: The Explosive Inside Story of ‘The View’” by Variety‘s New York Bureau Chief, Ramin Setoodeh, which was shared with the outlet. According to the excerpt, O’Donnell spoke of wanting to mentor her cohost and harboring “a little bit of a crush” that was “in no way sexualized.”

O’Donnell reiterated that stance on Twitter Tuesday, following appearances by Hasselbeck promoting her new book, “Point of View,” which details her asthma-attack-inducing firing from “The View” and her relationships with her co-hosts, though O’Donnell is unmentioned. 

“hey eh – my crush on u was not sexual – sorry u got scared,” O’Donnell, who is openly lesbian, posted to social media, “surely u recall b4 it all went wrong.” 

She added, “i never objectified u,” she continued, denying an accusation Hasselbeck made on airwaves, “i did find u fantastic – broadway shows – my pool -we were friends once god love ya kid – i always did” 

The “Sleepless in Seattle” actress also retweeted a post that slammed Hasselbeck. 

“Thank you @TheView for having Hasselcrack on today, it reminded me how much I can’t stand her,” the post shared by O’Donnell read. “Also, her homophobic rants about @Rosie we’re gross and completely careless on her part. Disappointed that the rest of the co-hosts didn’t step in to defend her.”

On Tuesday’s “View,” Hasselbeck said she respected O’Donnell “as a co-host and as a person in the office as I think it should happen in all workplaces.”

Hasselbeck, who played softball in college, also addressed O’Donnell’s theory that “there are not many, in my life, girls with such athletic talent on sports teams that are traditionally male that aren’t at least a little bit gay.” 

Hasselbeck said it was “a lie” and “reckless” to ascribe sexuality to athleticism. “Just because you’re athletic doesn’t have anything to do with your sexual preference,” she said. “It just doesn’t.”

She also stopped by another show she used to host – “Fox & Friends” – where she was asked about O’Donnell’s remarks about her in “Ladies Who Punch.”

“So, I read that – I’d like to be able to say I didn’t, but I read that,” Hasselbeck said. “I immediately started praying, because I’m like, ‘How am I going to handle this?’ “

Hasselbeck said her reaction was to turn to God and “just (start) praying, and I pray now the Holy Spirit gives me the words to articulate this, but I think it can be addressed with both truth and grace.”

“I feel like the truth is, (with) what she said, if you took her words and you replaced Rosie for Ronald, there would be an objectification of women in the workplace,” the former “Survivor” contestant said. “That is disturbing and it’s wrong. Whether you’re a man or whether you’re a woman, and you’re objectifying women in the workplace, it’s wrong.”

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Speaking directly to O’Donnell, Hasselbeck added: “Rosie, I think it was disturbing to read those things, and it was offensive to me, but I forgive her. I totally forgive you, Rosie. I really hope that we can be at peace and that we can both hold our beliefs in one hand and hold each other’s hands in the other and still have a relationship that’s at peace.

“But, more than that, just like I would pray for my friends, I hope that she has the peace of God,” Hasselbeck continued. “‘Cause Rosie O’Donnell is still seen and known and loved by God, and I hope that she feels that and I hope that she can find, ultimately, the peace. Even more than I want to be at peace with her, I hope she finds that peace ’cause God wants that for her too.”

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