In her book, "Settle for More," Fox News host Megyn Kelly says that Donald Trump tried to buy her support.
Kelly says that Trump tried unsuccessfully to give her gifts, including a free stay at one of his hotels, as part of what she called his pattern of trying to influence news coverage of his presidential campaign.
"This is actually one of the untold stories of the 2016 campaign: I was not the only journalist to whom Trump offered gifts clearly meant to shape coverage," Kelly said. He also attempted to woo them with praise, she said, adding, "This is smart, because the media is full of people whose egos need stroking."
"Trump tried to work the refs, and some of the refs responded," she said.
Early on, Trumped heaped praise on Fox News media critic Howard Kurtz and Kurtz remained in the tank for Trump the entire election. Did Kurtz also accept any gifts from Trump? We don't know, but he sure toted the Trump line throughout the election.
Kelly says that resisting Trump's attempts to buy her goodwill with an offer to comp her "girls' weekend" stay at his downtown New York City hotel or fly her and her husband to visit his Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida was an easy ethical decision.
About that first debate, when Kelly quickly fell on the bad side of Trump and his supporters.
At the first GOP primary debate last August that Kelly questioned Trump about derogatory comments he'd made about women. The day before, Trump had called Fox News executive Bill Sammon to say he had heard that Kelly's first question would be a pointed one aimed at him, she wrote.
"'How could he know that?' I wondered," Kelly said, not answering the question but clearing her Fox colleagues on the debate team of any suspicion of leaking it to him. Trump was agitated out of proportion in the phone call, she wrote, calling it "bizarre behavior, especially for a man who wanted the nuclear codes."
The book hits store shelves tomorrow.